Bill Gates Sounds The Alarm On This Virus In New York Sewers: 'Remains A Threat Until We End It'

Zinger Key Points
  • Pathogen that causes polio was found in samples taken at several locations in two New York counties
  • Last month, Gates warned polio could spread back globally after virus was detected in London’s sewage
Bill Gates Sounds The Alarm On This Virus In New York Sewers: 'Remains A Threat Until We End It'

Microsoft Corporation MSFT co-founder Bill Gates says the detection of polio in New York’s wastewater is an “urgent reminder” that the debilitating disease must be eradicated.

What Happened: Gates made his comments on Twitter and shared a story from the New York Times on the discovery of the polio virus in wastewater samples taken in several locations, at different times, in two counties north of New York City. 

“News that polio has been detected in New York wastewater samples is an urgent reminder: until we [EndPolio] for good, it remains a threat to us all,” said the billionaire. 

“The global eradication strategy must be fully supported to protect people everywhere.”

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Why It Matters: The discovery of polio from wastewater samples is a potential signal of community spread of the disease, according to the Times.

“Based on earlier polio outbreaks, New Yorkers should know that for every one case of paralytic polio observed, there may be hundreds of other people infected,” said Mary T. Bassett, New York’s health commissioner, according to the Times.

Bassett said the department is treating the single case of polio confirmed in New York as “the tip of the iceberg.”

That case was discovered in an unvaccinated adult in Rockland County, New York — the first in the United States since 1979, according to the report. 

Last month, Gates warned that polio could spread back globally after the virus was detected in London’s sewage.

At the time, the U.S. Department of Health had recommended that unvaccinated individuals get inoculated soon and people could opt for booster doses.

Price Action: On Monday, Microsoft shares closed 0.9% lower at $280.32 and rose 0.5% in the after-hours trading, according to data from Benzinga Pro.

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