23 November (Reuters) – An imminent threat of spreading measles in different parts of the world as COVID-19 has led to a steady decline in vaccination coverage and weakening surveillance of the disease, World Health Organization (WHO) , and the US National Health Organization said Wednesday.
Measles is one of the most contagious human viruses and is almost completely preventable by vaccination. However, 95% vaccination coverage is required to prevent outbreaks among the population.
Nearly 40 million children will not receive the measles vaccine in 2021, a record high, in a joint report by the WHO and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) due to the hurdles created by the COVID pandemic. said to have recorded
The number of measles cases has not risen dramatically from the previous year, but now is the time to act, WHO’s measles director Patrick O’Connor told Reuters.
“We are at a crossroads,” he said Tuesday. “It’s going to be a very difficult 12-24 months to try to mitigate this.”
A combination of factors, such as prolonged social distancing measures and the cyclical nature of measles, may explain why cases have not exploded despite widening immunity gaps, but it is rapidly disease, said O’Connor.
There has already been a rise in large and devastating outbreaks since the beginning of 2022, rising from 19 to nearly 30 by September, O’Connor said, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. He added that he was concerned about parts of Africa.
Reported by Raghav Mahobe, Bangalore and Jennifer Rigby, London.Edited by Maju Samuel
Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.