GENEVA (Jul. 16)
Israel will produce all the anti-polio vaccine it needs by next year, an Israeli medical expert reported today to the International Conference on Poliomelytis which is meeting here.
Dr. Perez Yekutiel, head of the epidemiological division of Israel’s Ministry of Health, said that last year Israel produced 40 percent of its own needs and imported the remainder from the United States. It will yet be several years before Israel manufactures enough vaccine to export, he estimated.
Israel which had one of the worst records of incidence and death from polio, enjoyed an almost disease-free year, Dr. Yekutiel reported. There were only 13 reported cases last year and no deaths, he said, as compared to 1950 when 202 persons died of polio. In a 1,000,000 pound vaccination program Israeli medical teams reached 94 percent of all children between six months and three years. They hope to extend the vaccination program to older children and some adults, Dr. Yekuitel said.