WHO reports progress toward eliminating measles in South-East Asia Region

Progress made toward eliminating measles
Progress made toward eliminating measles | Courtesy of

Health professionals from the World Health Organization (WHO) South-East Asian Region have stated that there has been significant progress made toward eliminating measles.

The committee members recently released a report that shows the progress that has been made in the elimination goals. In the South East Asia region, 67 to 78% of 286 million children have received coverage from the first measles vaccine dose. This amounts to 95% of the target population. The incidence rates of measles cases declined by 73%, from 59 cases per million population to 16 cases per million population.

In 2013, the Regional Committee of the WHO in South East Asia held its 66th session. At this meeting, the committee members adopted the goal to eliminate measles and control rubella and congenital rubella syndrome by 2020. This adoption was made only after serious and rigorous previous consultations.

The adoption included several strategy recommendations, including creating and maintaining a sensitive and timely measles surveillance system that is based on measles cases, achieving and sustaining more than 95% coverage with 2 doses of the MMR vaccine throughout each district or supplementary vaccination activities, achieving timely investigation, identification, and response to measles outbreaks, and creating and sustaining a network of accredited measles laboratories.

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