In Summary
  • According to WHO data, in 2018 more than one in 10 missed out on lifesaving vaccines such as measles, diphtheria and tetanus.

The number of measles cases reported in the country in the last year has gone up from 63 in 2017 to 822 cases in 2018, according to data released on Friday.

The data, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF as of July 1, also indicated that the vaccination coverage for measles in the country decreased in the last three years.

In the last one year from 2017 to 2018, the number of children who received the first dose of measles vaccination reduced from 97 percent in 2016 and stagnated at 90 percent in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

However, from the data, most of the children are not getting their second dosage of measles vaccination, which started being available from 2015.

From 2015, the second dosage coverage stood at 32 percent, but increased to 42 percent in 2018.

POOR TREND

Measles disease is preventable through two doses of a safe and effective vaccine. For several years however global coverage with the first dose of the vaccine has stalled at 85 percent.

This is far short of the 95 percent needed to prevent outbreaks, and leaves many people exposed to the disease.

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