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Two new measles cases recorded

December 6, 2019 4:33 pm
The latest confirmed cases are a 3 month old from Wailali Settlement in Wainadoi, and a 1 year 5-month-old from Wailekutu in Lami.

There are now 18 confirmed cases of measles.

The latest confirmed cases are a 3 month old from Wailali Settlement in Wainadoi, and a 1 year 5-month-old from Wailekutu in Lami.

The respective outbreak response teams have rapidly responded to the latest cases.

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The 18 cases to date are from the following areas in the Central Division:

• 12 cases from the Serua/Namosi Subdivision (Wailali, Wainadoi, Navunikabi, and Makosoi Deuba)

• 4 cases from Suva Subdivision (Samabula, Vatuwaqa, Tacirua, Wailekutu).

• 2 cases from Rewa Subdivision (Koronivia, Nasilai Village Nakelo).

In the first two days of phase two of the mass vaccination campaign, over 70 health teams have vaccinated more than 45,000 people across Central Division.

The Ministry will continue to issue daily advisories in all media outlets which will provide updates on the mass vaccination campaign.

Measles is a highly contagious disease; therefore, non-essential travel to Serua/Namosi and Nasilai Village in Nakelo is strongly discouraged, as are mass gatherings in these areas.

The Ministry advises that it will not support and has not supported any requests to condone mass gatherings in these locations.

To help stop the spread of the disease, the Ministry of Health is advising Fijians to take the following precautions:

• Avoid non-essential travel to Serua/Namosi and Nasilai Village in Nakelo. If you need to travel to these areas, please get vaccinated against measles at least two weeks before travel. Please avoid taking those that cannot get vaccinated (e.g. babies under the age of 6 months and pregnant women) to the outbreak areas.

• Avoid holding or attending large gatherings of people, especially in Central Division, but also those that bring participants from across the country or overseas (such as youth camps, religious gatherings, graduation ceremonies, sporting events, etc.). Measles can spread very easily among large groups of people if they are not immune, who can then take the disease back into their communities.

• If you are holding an event with international visitors, or participants from an outbreak area, please strongly encourage them to get vaccinated against measles at least two (2) weeks before travel. This especially applies to visitors traveling from other countries with measles outbreaks i.e. New Zealand, Samoa, and Tonga.

The Ministry is conducting an immunization campaign targeting people who may not be fully immunized and are most at risk of measles infection.

Close to 100,000 people around the country were vaccinated in phase one of the campaign.

This includes over 20,000 people in the outbreak area of Serua/Namosi.

People who were vaccinated in phase one of the campaign will not be vaccinated again in phase two.

The second phase of this immunization campaign began on Wednesday 4th December.

Across Fiji it is targeting people in the groups listed below:

1) Any child in Fiji who has not received 2 doses of a measles vaccine as per the national immunization schedule
2) Any child in Fiji aged 12 and 18 months who is due their routine measles vaccine as per the national immunization schedule
3) Any person in Fiji travelling overseas, however evidence of travel must be provided i.e. travel itinerary or ticket
4) All health care workers in Fiji
5) All airport and hotel staff

In Central Division only, the campaign will also target:

1) All children aged 6 months to 5 years
2) All people born between 1980 and 2000 (19 to 39 year olds, who should have ID available if asked).
3) All residents of Serua/Namosi aged 6 months and older.

Pregnant women, those with compromised immune systems, and those with a known allergy to the vaccine should not be vaccinated.

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