A combined report from two major public health bodies has declared measles an “imminent threat” to the global community.
Released on Thursday, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) feared that a record decline of measles vaccination rates and persistent large outbreaks meant that the respiratory virus was an “imminent threat in every region of the world”.
WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said it was “absolutely critical” that immunisation programmes were bought back on track to avoid what he said is a “preventable disease”.
“The paradox of the pandemic is that while vaccines against Covid-19 were developed in record time and deployed in the largest vaccination campaign in history, routine immunisation programmes were badly disrupted, and millions of kids missed out on lifesaving vaccinations against deadly diseases like measles,” Ghebreyesus said.
According to the WHO, India, Somalia and Yemen are the three countries with the largest measles outbreak.