10 May, 2020
5 Min Read
UN releases commemorative postage stamp on anniversary of eradication of smallpox
Part of: GS-II- International organisation (PT-MAINS-PERSONALITY TEST)
World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN's postal agency have released a commemorative postage stamp today on the 40th anniversary of the eradication of smallpox. In May 1980, the 33rd World Health Assembly issued its official declaration that the world and all peoples have won freedom from smallpox.
It ended after a 10-year WHO-spearheaded global effort that involved thousands of health workers around the world to administer half a billion vaccinations to stamp out smallpox. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, when WHO's smallpox eradication campaign was launched in 1967, one of the ways countries raised awareness about smallpox was through postage stamps.
The stamp recognises the global solidarity in fighting smallpox and honours millions of people working together. From world leaders and international organisations to rural doctors and community health workers, to eradicate smallpox the stamp has recognised all.
About small pox?
Smallpox is an extremely contagious disease, which is caused by the deadly virus called Variola. This contagious disease came into existence since 10,000 BC. In 1980, this syndrome was declared as completely eradicated after the global immunization campaign led by the World Health Organization (WHO) with the help of the smallpox vaccine. The first effective vaccine to be discovered was the smallpox one as it was developed in 1796 by Edward Jenner. The last symptoms of this infectious disease were found in the year 1977.
Smallpox – An Extremely Contagious Disease
Smallpox is a contagious disease, which transmits from one person to another by infective droplets of an infected person. There is no treatment found for this contagious disease but could be prevented through the vaccinations.
Variola- The Smallpox Virus
The variola virus has two forms namely the Variola minor and Variola major. Variola virus, is a deadly virus, being a member of the orthopoxvirus family. The structure of this virus resembles that of brick ones and the core of the virus is made up of a genetic material DNA which resembles a dumbbell in shape. The DNA in the core comprises necessary proteins, which are required to replicate the host’s cell. The incubation period for this disease is about 17 days, which later results in severe fever with the appearance of rashes on the face, legs, hands, arms, etc.
Causes of Smallpox
Smallpox is an airborne disease that spreads at a faster rate and is mainly caused by an infection of a deadly type of virus variola.
Symptoms of Smallpox
Usually, after the infection of the variola virus, the symptoms occur after 17 days. Below Listed general symptoms are seen after the incubation period
Treatment for Smallpox
Since it is a deadly disease, there is no such cure available for this syndrome. It could be still prevented by vaccinating with the smallpox vaccine. This vaccine helps in preventing the disease from illness and causing fatal conditions to humans. The antibodies present in this vaccine protects the body from invading and to destroy the virus.
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