The book is authored by eminent virologist and Emeritus Professor of Virology, Christian Medical College, Vellore Dr T Jacob John Dr Dhanya Dharmapalan was officially released today by Dr Krishna Ella, Scientist, Co-Founder, Chairman and Managing Director Bharat Biotech in New Delhi today .
The book talks about polio and the pitfalls of countries encountered in the past and present in the control and prevention of pandemics and even epidemics.
Highlighting the causative microorganisms of infectious diseases such as polio and others can only be eliminated and eradicated from our planet by uniform global decisions rapidly adopted by all countries and their governments without reference to their gross domestic product or status of public health systems. The book enables each one to spread the message for urgent and decisive universal action on emerging pathogens.
Speaking about the author of the book Dr Ella said “Dr T Jacob John is not only known for his deep knowledge about vaccines, but he is also well known for his wisdom and his immense contribution to eradicating polio in India through his deep expertise in virology . It is a great honor for us to acknowledge, and extend our deepest appreciation this day to the Father of Indian Virology and visionary in polio eradication. Today we are celebrating science, and a great scientist, virologist of our nation. To achieve our national goals and to address the greater concerns confronting humanity today, science plays a vital role, and Dr John is an outstanding example of its impact. “
Addressing the gathering soon after the launch of the book Dr Jacob John said, “Human diseases, particularly infectious diseases, how we manage it are in our hands, science has solutions, we have to find the solutions and apply them properly to manage our health That is the biggest lesson science teaches us. When it comes to Polio we have to use scientific methodologies in trying to prevent, control and eradicate polio. You experiment and create models. The same thing for coronavirus, you apply science and measure effectiveness of any intervention by evidence that is the way to go forward. “
He added that the book is all about his anger and anguish seeing Polio is still affecting children, in 2022. He added, “We could have eradicated it if we would have used the right strategy. Where have we gone wrong with the strategy that is the book all about. ”
Dr Jacob who joined the Christian Medical College as teaching faculty in 1959 rose to become the Professor of Virology at the institution. Dr. John is acknowledged for having established the Department of Diagnostic Virology Laboratory at the Christian Medical College.
Globally well-known scientists and medicine stalwarts, Dr Roger Glass – Director, Fogarty International Center and Associate Director, International Research, NIH – and Dr Priya Abraham, Director, NIV, also shared their experience and association with Dr John through a video message.
Dr John also held various prestigious positions such as the Director of the ICMR Center for Advanced Research in Virology and the Director of the National AIDS Reference Lab in the CMC. He was the National President of the Indian Association of Medical Microbiologists and the Indian Association of Pediatrics. And, is widely known for his Gospel – Immunise, Protect Children.
As a former President of the Rotary Club of Vellore, Dr John is credited with having played a significant role in the eradication of polio in India and other countries through the Pulse Polio Program by persuading Rotary International to take up polio eradication as an international voluntary movement .
Freeing children from the polio menace in Vellore in 1982 is among his most prominent public healthcare contibution, thereafter he was named the founding member of the RI Pulse Polio Program in 1984 for ensuring polio eradication throughout the world.
Dr Jacob served as Chairman of the Expert Advisory Group on Polio Eradication of the Government of India till 2010. With the declaration of India as polio-free in February 2014, he has now taken up the task of controlling tuberculosis (TB).