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The Polio Parallel: W5


Catalogue Number:  CTV850
Producer:  CTV
Subject:  Canadian History, Canadian Social Issues, Current Events, Documentary, Family Studies/Home Economics, Global Issues, Health and Medicine, History, Science, Social Issues, Social Sciences
Language:  English
Grade Level:  9 - 12, Post Secondary, Adult
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2020
Running Time:  21:23


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CTV’s W5 presents an interesting parallel between polio and COVID-19. In the early 1950’s poliomyelitis, a highly contagious virus, was attacking children in waves. Schools were closed and sports events cancelled. Miki Boleen from BC describes her teenage experience with polio treatment. Former Prime Minister Paul Martin recalls his agonizing childhood polio experience. The March of Dimes raised money which led to Dr. Salk’s breakthrough vaccine. Health minister Paul Martin Sr. courageously defended continuing the vaccine production in Toronto when Americans halted theirs due to safety concerns. 1.8 million Canadian children were vaccinated, protecting them against the next wave, but too late for David Onley, former Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. WHO says countries need to restart polio immunization programs to prevent a new epidemic.


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