Rapid outbreak of measles: A global concern

The UNICEF in association with the WHO declares the rapid outbreak of measles as a GLOBAL CONCERN

By the end of the last year, the entire globe was tensed that till what extent, the third wave might affect the children.
But as time passed by, the world witnessed another new reason of fear. This new reason is fear is the high rising number of cases of measles. According to details from the United Nations and the Unicef, the measles cases have surged almost 80% across the world.
The UN along with the Unicef have declared meseales as a global warning. In the months of January and February, 2022 more than 17,330 measles cases were reported globally. In comparison to this year, the last year's count was 9,665 in the first two months of 2021.
A highly contagious disease, measles cases rise when the number of vaccination goes down. Even though the number of cases are moderate in India, the number of cases are constantly rising in Somalia, Yemen, Nigeria, Afganisthan and Ethiopia. As children are mostly effected due to the virus, vaccination is the most necessary thing which will keep them protected. But it was during the Covid period that there was an insufficient vaccine coverage.
"Measles is more than a dangerous and potentially deadly disease. It is also an early indication that there are gaps in our global immunization coverage, gaps vulnerable children cannot afford," said Catherine Russell, UNICEF Executive Director
"The COVID-19 pandemic has interrupted immunization services, health systems have been overwhelmed, and we are now seeing a resurgence of deadly diseases including measles. For many other diseases, the impact of these disruptions to immunization services will be felt for decades to come," said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization.
representative image
Image: representative image
"Now is the moment to get essential immunization back on track and launch catch-up campaigns so that everybody can have access to these life-saving vaccines."
"Measles is more than a dangerous and potentially deadly disease. It is also an early indication that there are gaps in our global immunization coverage, gaps vulnerable children cannot afford," said Catherine Russell, UNICEF Executive Director. "It is encouraging that people in many communities are beginning to feel protected enough from COVID-19 to return to more social activities. But doing so in places where children are not receiving routine vaccination creates the perfect storm for the spread of a disease like measles."
As countries work to respond to outbreaks of measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases, and recover lost ground, UNICEF and WHO, along with partners such as Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the partners of the Measles & Rubella Initiative (M&RI), Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and others are supporting efforts to strengthen immunization systems by: --restoring services and vaccination campaigns so countries can safely deliver routine immunization programmes to fill the gaps left by the backsliding, helping health workers and community leaders communicate actively with caregivers to explain the importance of vaccinations, rectifying gaps in immunization coverage, including identifying communities and people who have been missed during the pandemic, ensuring that COVID-19 vaccine delivery is independently financed and well-integrated into overall planning for immunization services so that it is not carried out at the cost of childhood and other vaccination services; and implementing country plans to prevent and respond to outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases and strengthening immunization systems as part of COVID-19 recovery efforts.



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