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WHO and CDC Says COVID Is To Blame For Measles Being An “Imminent Threat” Worldwide

Two public health agencies have deemed measles an “imminent threat” worldwide.

In a statement released on Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) expressed concern that the respiratory virus presented an “imminent threat in every region of the world” due to a record decline in measles vaccination rates and significant ongoing outbreaks.

To avert what he called a “preventable disease,” WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said it was “absolutely critical” that immunization programs be back on track.

“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 immunization programs were badly disrupted, and millions of kids missed out on lifesaving vaccinations against deadly diseases like measles,” said Dr. Ghebreyesus.

India, Somalia, and Yemen are the three nations with the most significant measles outbreaks, according to the WHO.

The measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine administered during childhood is considered the best defense against future virus outbreaks, despite its contagious nature.

Children between the ages of 12 and 18 months in Australia can receive the vaccine for free.  Refugees and humanitarian entrants may also be eligible for a catch-up vaccination.

According to the CDC, nine out of ten individuals not immunized against the disease contract it when exposed.

The virus infects people through water droplets released by sneezing and coughing.  Symptoms include fever, cold symptoms, conjunctivitis, and rashes that begin around the face and hairline and spread throughout the body.

Once the initial symptoms appear, the characteristic rash generally appears three to four days later.

As of last week, there have been three confirmed cases in a Singaporean family traveling to Melbourne, bringing the total to five in 2022.

Doctors have advised anyone experiencing symptoms to seek medical attention, wear a mask, and call beforehand to ensure they can be isolated from others.

According to the CDC, The most vulnerable groups to serious illness are small children and adults with compromised immune systems.

“Measles is a highly infectious viral disease that spreads quickly with close contact, especially in those who are not fully vaccinated,” said deputy chief health advisor Deborah Friedman.

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