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ECHO Daily Flash

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Madagascar – Measles outbreak

published on 21/12/2018
  • The Ministry of Public Health in Madagascar formally declared a measles outbreak on 26 October 2018. No deaths have been reported officially to date, although mortality probably related to measles has been reported from various hospitals. The most affected district is Antananarivo Renivohitra. As of 14 December more than 9 364 cases have been officially reported from 55 districts.
  • The outbreak is attributed to a decrease in the population immunity below 75% since 2014. Between 22 Oct -9 Nov a measles vaccination campaign targeting 95% of 9-59 months-old was carried out in affected districts of Grand Tana. Unfortunately, this campaign has not been able to stop the spread of the outbreak. Plans are underway to expand the immunization campaign to cover children aged 9 months-10 years in 25 of the most at risk districts (tentatively 14-15 January) funded by health partners and the MRI (Measles Rubella Initiative ). Additional districts considered at high risk should be targeted by the vaccination. Currently the funding gap for additional vaccines and consumables is USD 1.7 million.
  • The continuous propagation and the rapid increase in the number of measles cases in Madagascar is of concern. The outbreak is already in highly populated areas, and in a largely non-immune population as indicated by the wide range of the age groups affected. Given the high transmissibility of measles, it can be expected that this outbreak may evolve exponentially.
  • The combination of a measles outbreak with severe problems of access to food in various regions/districts represents a potential high risk of malnutrition and mortality for the most vulnerable children.
Emergency Response Coordination Centre, echo-ercc@ec.europa.eu, +32 229 21112