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Mon, 13 May 2019 12:00 - Updated Mon, 13 May 2019 12:00

Measles outbreak in eastern region contained

Saurimo - The Health minister, Sílvia Lucutuca, ensured on Sunday that the measles outbreak that is since March this year plaguing the eastern region of Angola is now under control.

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Health minister, Sílvia Lutucuta

Photo: David Dias

According to the minister, the outbreak in Lucapa (Lunda Norte Province) and Luau (Moxico Province) municipalities are currently under control, while in Saurimo Municipality (Lunda Sul) the situation persists and caused the death until last Sunday of 59 people out of the overall 1,664 diagnosed cases.

In order to prevent more deaths, the Angolan government through the Health Ministry has bolstered the number of health staff in Saurimo Municipality by adding 32 professionals namely physicians, nurses, lab technicians, ophthalmologists and made ready 25,000 vaccines.

The first case of measles had been diagnosed in Luau and Moxico border in March this year, after a child from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) was diagnosed with the disease. Up to last Sunday in Luau, three people died over the disease from an overall 370 diagnosed cases, while in Lucapa Municipality at least eight cases were recorded without any one dying from the illness.

A mega vaccination campaign involving 103 teams among staff of the Angola Armed Forces (FAA) and chieftains kicked off last Saturday in Saurimo Municipality for the vaccination of 83,000 children.

According to the Health minister, several epidemiologic surveillance measures have been redoubled in Luau border to keep the situation under control.

Measles is a highly contagious infectious disease caused by the measles virus.

Symptoms usually develop 10–12 days after exposure to an infected person and last 7–10 days. Initial symptoms typically include fever.

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