Measles epidemic: Death toll rises to 65 amid state of emergency in Samoa

Measles epidemic: Death toll rises to 65 amid state of emergency in Samoa


No fewer than 65 persons have died since the outbreak of measles epidemic in Samoa. The Samoan government confirmed on Saturday two more deaths in the island nation’s measles epidemic; increasing the death toll since the outbreak started in mid-October.

According to a statement on Saturday, the Samoan Ministry of Health said that of the 65 deaths recorded; 57 of them involved children aged under four, with two fatalities reported in the past 24 hours.

The ministry said that it recorded a total of 4,460 measles cases recorded by the Disease Surveillance Team so far; with 103 cases reported in the past 24 hours.

Currently, a total of 165 people are hospitalised with measles in the island nation.


READ ALSO: Measles outbreak: Samoa puts on hold activities for two-day vaccination campaign


Samoa is in a state of emergency, with all schools closed; a mass vaccination campaign underway and public gatherings restricted.

On Thursday and Friday, Samoa closed most of the public service and government services; in order to allow all public servants to assist with the mass vaccination campaign throughout the island nation.

As of Dec. 6, about 89 percent of all eligible people in Samoa received the vaccinated against measles.

Measles, a highly contagious viral disease that transmits via droplets from the nose; mouth or throat of infected persons.

Death may occur in up to 5-10 per cent of infected young children in developing countries.


Source: FBC News

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Olanike Akinrimisi

Humanitarian reporter, writer and author

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