May 25, 2020

Half a hundred children killed by a measles outbreak in Samoa

Some 53 people, including 48 children under the age of four, have died in Samoa, in the South Pacific, because of a measles outbreak despite the efforts of the authorities to prevent the spread of this infectious disease.

At least 3,728 people have contracted this disease in Samoa since the outbreak in October, 198 of them in the last 24 hours, the Samoan government reported on Twitter.

The authorities have administered vaccines to 58,150 people since November 20, when a vaccination campaign in this country of less than 200,000 inhabitants began.

Since 2017, measles has spread throughout the world, including several Western Pacific countries, such as Fiji and Tonga, where the last outbreak was recorded in 2014, according to the World Health Organization.

The epidemic has forced the Oceania Soccer Confederation to postpone until next year the U16 women's continental championship of this sport scheduled next month in Tahiti, in French Polynesia.

Measles is a childhood disease – highly contagious and becoming lethal – that causes significant respiratory complications especially in young adults.

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