All Documentary Films

Polio - The Last Word

Polio – the Last Word documents the progress seen in the 20th century toward the eradication of polio and what remains to be done in the 21st.

Director/Producer: Nick Thorpe
Director/Producer: Adam Csillag
Production Company
Bullfrog Films
Release Date
January 1, 1995

Thirty-five years ago, an intensive program of vaccination virtually eliminated polio from the developed world, but in the poorer countries the disease still claims 400,000 victims every year. It's an unacceptable state of affairs, which the World Health Organization has promised to stop—by wiping polio off the face of the earth by the year 2000. This film documents the history of this epic human undertaking, from the terrifying polio epidemics that raged in the early years of the twentieth century, to the development of the vaccines by Jonas Salk and Albert Sabin, and the extraordinary effort by ordinary people to spread the vaccine throughout the world. Now there's the real possibility that if remote regions can be reached with the vaccine, and the level of immunization is maintained worldwide, polio—like smallpox, can be eliminated forever.

Stay Informed
Sign up for periodic news updates and event invitations.
Connect with us on social media or view all of our social media content in one place.

The privacy of your data is important to us. We've updated our privacy policies in response to General Data Protection Regulation.