No reason for measles outbreak in Azerbaijan

15 January 2018 17:49 (UTC+04:00)

By Sara Israfilbayova

Measles outbreaks continue to occur in a number of European countries, and there is a risk of spread and sustained transmission in areas with susceptible populations.

Romania, Italy, Germany, Ukraine and Greece had the highest rates of the virus.

Deputy Director of the Republican Center of Hygiene and Epidemiology of the Azerbaijani Ministry of Healthcare Afag Aliyeva commented on this issue and a concern about spreading the disease in Azerbaijan.

“Due to the high vaccination coverage in Azerbaijan, measles among children is not possible,” she said. “The main cause of measles in Ukraine, Romania, Italy and some European countries is low vaccination coverage.”

In accordance with the vaccination schedule, this vaccine is administered when the child is 12 months or six years old.

She went on to say that there are enough vaccines in Azerbaijan and those vaccines are safe in accordance with the requirements of the World Health Organization, adding that the number of vaccines is as much as the number of children in the country.

“In 2006, an immunization campaign was conducted among people under 35 years of age. Since the vaccination rate was above 95 percent in the same year, there were no measles in Azerbaijan in 2008, and measles was not registered until 2013,” Aliyeva stressed.

She noted that at the same time, there is a high collective immunity against measles in Azerbaijan.

Aliyeva noted that vaccination against measles does not create complete immunity in the child, and after 5 years the second vaccination is carried out: “Thus, this immunity is maintained in the child for 25-30 years.”

The deputy director said that the idea that everyone should carry measles or chickenpox is unreasonable.

Measles, or rubella, is a viral infection of the respiratory system. Measles is a very contagious disease that can spread through contact with infected mucus and saliva. An infected person can release the infection into the air when they cough or sneeze.

The measles virus can live on surfaces for several hours. As the infected particles enter the air and settle on surfaces, anyone within close proximity can become infected.

Drinking from an infected person’s glass, or sharing eating utensils with an infected person, increases your risk of infection.

Measles is a leading cause of death in children

Measles in children take a special place among infectious diseases. Symptoms of measles in children are manifested by high fever, characteristic rash, sore throat, cough and signs of severe intoxication of the body. Measles can occur with serious complications right up to a lethal outcome. Annually from measles more than 150,000 people die, mostly children under 10 years old.

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