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Rotarian makes headlines fighting polio in India

Rotarian makes headlines fighting polio in India

Francis Batt

Rotarian makes headlines fighting polio in India

Retired Windsor dentist Adrian Stabbins has hit the headlines this week.

He and his wife Veronica (pictured) have been seen on our television screens vaccinating children against polio in the slums of Delhi, as hopes rise that the disease could one day be eradicated.

Adrian, of Kimber Close, was the town's dentist for many years. For the last two years he and Veronica have joined Rotarians from the UK and Lucknow in India administering polio vaccines to children in India on National Immunisation Day.

They work in several immunisation booths and doing 'house to house' visits accompanied by health workers, administering oral vaccines to as many as 200 babies and children under five every two hours.

Over the last week they have been back in the slums of Old Delhi and this time they have had the BBC for company.

Adrian and Veronica were clearly seen on television this week in their bright Rotarian yellow shirts administering the vaccine to children, as BBC health correspondent Fergus Walsh explained the value of their work.

The possible eradication of polio worldwide has made a top new story this week. In 1985 there were 150,000 cases of polio in India. But none have been reported since January 2011, partly as a result of the work of Rotarians.

Veronica and Adrian are members of Windsor and Eton Rotary Club and regularly report to members at meetings about their Indian visits. Veronica told Mr Walsh: "It is wonderful to be part of trying to eradicate this dreadful disease. When we go home we try to raise awareness of what still needs to be done."

The couple's son Richard is preparing for the London Marathon in April, when he will be raising money for the End Polio Now campaign.

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