Thursday , March 30 2023

Possible major measles outbreak from the COVID-19 pandemic


Newborn with measles

Major measles outbreaks can occur during 2021 with unexpected consequences Coronavirus Infectious Disease-19: Corona 19 According to a new academic article, it is an epidemic.

Articles posted on lance, Urges urgent international action to prevent the potentially fatal measles epidemic in the coming years.

Professor Kim Mulholland of the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and chair of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) SAGE Working Group on Measles and Rubella Vaccinations This year, many children miss out on measles vaccinations, leading to future measles. He said that the outbreak could not be avoided.

Professor Mulholland said 2020 has been a quiet year for measles, but in part due to reduced travel and national COVID-19 control measures, the economic impact will lead to many cases of malnutrition in children.

Malnutrition exacerbates the severity of measles, resulting in worse outcomes and more deaths, especially in low and middle income countries.

“Children who die from measles often suffer from malnutrition, but acute measles causes many surviving children to become malnourished,” he said. “While malnutrition delays death with measles-related immune suppression, vitamin A deficiency can lead to measles-related blindness.

“In the coming months, the number of unvaccinated children who are prone to measles will increase. Many people live in poor, remote areas where health systems are less resilient and malnutrition and vitamin A deficiency are already increasing.”

Professor Mulholland said the COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the control of vaccination-preventable diseases, with vaccination campaigns halted in early 2020, and routine immunization services in many countries significantly halted.

The WHO estimates that by the end of October 2020, vaccination campaigns in 26 countries were delayed, causing 94 million children to miss the scheduled measles vaccine.

“All of these factors create an environment for severe measles outbreaks in 2021, accompanied by increased mortality and severe consequences of measles that were common decades ago,” said Professor Mulholland. “This is despite the fact that we have a very cost-effective way to prevent this disease through measles vaccination.”

In 2019, before the epidemic began, the world has experienced a far more dramatic relapse of measles than ever in the past 20 years. According to WHO data, there were 9.8 million cases of measles and 207,000 deaths in 2019, a 50% increase from 2016.

The majority of measles deaths in 2019 occurred in Africa, most of which were related to major outbreaks in Madagascar and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Measles has also reappeared in South America, especially in Aboriginal communities.

“The inadequate vaccinations that led to the measles outbreak in 2019 have not yet been adequately addressed, and the situation is exacerbated by service disruptions during the current COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in high-risk, unvaccinated children gathering in unreached communities.” Said Mulholland.

This article has identified three pillars for immediate action.

  • Helping the country reach unvaccinated children through follow-up vaccinations and campaigns
  • Better prepare the country for an expected outbreak. WHO and partners have developed a strategic response plan to support the prevention, preparedness and response of the outbreak of measles.
  • Maintain your measles and rubella elimination goals. WHO’s new measles rubella strategy framework 2021-2030 is consistent with the vaccination agenda 2030, providing a plan to strengthen routine immunization and surveillance.

Professor Mulholland said the solution will help end the cycle of inadequate vaccinations and outbreaks over the past decade.

“If you don’t work together now, you’re more likely to have increased measles and serious, fatal and complications over the next few years,” he said.

See also: Kim Mulholland, Katrina Kretsinger, Liya Wondwossen and Natasha Crowcroft, November 12, 2020, “Action Needed Now to Prevent Further Increases in Measles and Measles Deaths in the Next Years”, lance.
DOI: 10.1016 / S0140-6736 (20) 32394-1

Source link