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Poliovirus outbreak expands in NY: Third county has vaccination rate of 62%

A polio vaccine box is displayed at a health clinic in Brooklyn, New York on August 17, 2022.

Enlarge / A polio vaccine box is displayed at a health clinic in Brooklyn, New York on August 17, 2022. (credit: Getty | Ed Jones)

A third county in New York with a low vaccination rate has detected poliovirus in its wastewater, suggesting that spread of the dangerous virus is expanding, which continues to pose a significant threat to anyone unvaccinated.

Wastewater sampling in Sullivan County detected poliovirus twice in July and twice in August, the New York State Health Department announced. Genetic sequencing determined that the positive samples are linked to the case of paralytic polio reported from Rockland County in July, which was genetically linked to viruses circulating in London and Israel.

Sullivan Country joins nearby Rockland County, Orange County, and New York City in having poliovirus detected in sewage. At least 13 sewage samples from Rockland and eight from Orange have tested positive since April. The three counties are all in a northwest-pointing line from New York City, along the state’s southern border. Earlier this month, New York City also announced finding poliovirus in wastewater surveillance

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