measles Current Affairs

WHO declares Brazil measles free

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has officially declared Brazil free of measles, after no case of the disease was registered in the year 2015.

The eradication of measles in Brazil is the conclusion of work spanning several years. The WHO had worked along with the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) to eradicate the disease.

From 1985 to 2000, Brazil did not saw any domestic cases of measles because of joint efforts to WHO and PAHO. But the disease broke out again in 2013 in the northeastern Brazilian states of Pernambuco and Ceara.

About Measles

  • Measles is a highly contagious airborne disease transmitted orally, through mucus or saliva.
  • It mainly affects children and can be spread rapidly through the air due to sneezing or a cough. Thus it is highly infectious airborne disease.
  • The first symptoms of disease appear after 10 days with red spots on the skin. Most patients recover within three weeks.
  • It can also cause pneumonia, blindness or even death in malnourished children. Most of those infected with this disease and who die are less than five years old.
  • Annually Measles affects about 20 million people across the globe and primarily in the developing areas of Asia and Africa.

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Government launches Mission Indradhanush to immunise kids against 7 vaccine-preventable diseases

Government has launched Mission Indradhanush to immunise kids against 7 vaccine-preventable diseases.

Mission Indradhanush depicts 7 colours of the rainbow which aims to cover all those children by 2020 who are either unvaccinated, or are partially vaccinated against 7 vaccine preventable diseases.

  • 7 preventable diseases: diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B.

It was launched by Union Health Minister J P Nadda on the occasion of National Good Governance Day.

Key facts about Mission Indradhanush

  • It will be focused and systematic immunization drive  through a catch-up campaign mode aiming to cover all the children who have been left out or missed out for immunization.
  • Under this scheme government will conduct 4 special vaccination campaigns between January and June 2015 with intensive planning and monitoring .
  • These campaigns will be planned and implemented according to the learning’s of the successful implementation of the polio programme.
  • It will be implemented in 2 phases in 2015. First phase will cover 201 districts. While, second phase will cover 297 districts.
  • For the first phase government has identified 201. These are high-focus districts in the country which have nearly 50 per cent of all unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children. Under this mission, these districts will be targeted intensively in order to improve the routine immunization coverage.
  • Among the 201 districts, 82 districts are in four  BHIMARU states i.e Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh. In these 82 districts nearly 25 per cent children are  unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children.
  • WHO, UNICEF, Rotary International and others will be donor partners for Mission Indradhanush. While the mass media, interpersonal communication will play crucial role to monitor and evaluate the sturdy mechanisms for implementing this mission.

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