many countries, in Africa in particular, have identified new cases of measles since the beginning of the year. An avant-courier sign of gaps in vaccination coverage on the globe scale, alert the WHO and Unicef.
While the vice of the COVID -19 seems to be loosening on the world -the mortality rate linked to the pandemic has never been so low since March 2020 -, other diseases are surface. Among them, the most contagious of all, measles, already worries international bodies, since nearly 17,338 cases were reported in the world in January and February 2022, against 9,665 in the first two months of 2021, an increase of 79 % in one year. Africa is particularly affected, with an increase of 400 % for the first three months of 2022 compared to the same period of 2021, according to the Regional Bureau of the World Health Organization (WHO).
However, measles can be almost entirely avoided by a two -doses vaccination, whose efficiency exceeds 97 % and lasts life in most people. Over the past twenty years, the WHO estimates that The vaccine has made it possible to avoid more than 30 million deaths worldwide, going from nearly 1 million deaths in 2000 to more than 60,000 in 2020.
The rate of reproduction of the disease, that is to say the number of people contaminated by an infected person, being very high (between 17 and 20), vaccination coverage must reach 95 % of the population to prevent the circulation of the virus. A major challenge in many regions. For the past year, the most affected countries have been Somalia, Yemen, Afghanistan, Nigeria and Ethiopia, where only 46 % to 68 % of the populations had received a dose of vaccine in 2020.
Signals that international bodies deem very worrying. “In addition to being a dangerous and potentially fatal disease, measles is a warning sign which reveals gaps in vaccination coverage on the scale of the globe – gaps that will suffer vulnerable children,” alerted Catherine Russell, Director General of UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Fund, very committed to vaccination, in a common press release with WHO, disseminated on April 27.
catch -up campaigns
The COVVI-19 pandemic has weakened many health systems by monopolizing professionals and postponing care as well as prevention campaigns deemed non-priority. “Today we see the resurgence of fatal diseases such as measles, and the consequences of these disturbances will be felt for several decades with regard to other diseases,” said Doctor Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director WHO general. And to insist: “It is urgent to put the essential services of vaccination on rails and to launch catch -up campaigns so that everyone can have access to these vital vaccines.” We must add to this the lifting of barriers in the Most countries, which until then participated in blocking, in addition to the COVID-19, the transmission of a certain number of diseases.
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