How important is it to have a measles vaccination?

  • Susan Naudé Health Systems Trust
Keywords: measles, vaccination


How important is it to have a measles vaccination in South Africa? Measles is highly contagious and a leading cause of vaccine-preventable deaths in children, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimated a 92% decrease in measles-related deaths in the WHO Afro region from 2000 - 2008.1 The National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) reported an increase of laboratory-confirmed cases of measles2 in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, and the Northern Cape and Western Cape from six in 2013, to 49 in 2014. Distribution of the disease is presented in Table I. Earlier in 2015, the Mail and Guardian reported on these statistics under the heading, Measles threat puts Ebola to shame.3 Unlike Ebola, measles is much more pervasive in its spread.

Author Biography

Susan Naudé, Health Systems Trust
Training Co-ordinator Health Systems Trust