Somalia: 20 Children die of Measles

Published on Monday 14th July 2008

Somalia: Up to twenty children have died of measles over the last week in areas of lower Shabelle region elders in the region confirmed on Monday.

Most of the deceased children died in a small village in the region called Jabey village 45km north of Jowhar town the provincial capital of middle Shabelle region.

"More than others in nearby areas were diagnosed with measles symptoms," elders told Shabelle English service.

One of the region's elders that is to say Sheikh Ali Yusuf said that there are no medical facilities can prevent against the measles in the region.

He said the deaths were confirmed when elders in the region visited the affected areas last week, following complaints from the locals. The people in the region, he added, had never been vaccinated against measles because they were inaccessible.

Measles is spread through respiration (contact with fluids from an infected person's nose and mouth, either directly or through aerosol transmission), and is highly contagious--90% of people without immunity sharing a house with an infected person will catch it.

Airborne precautions should be taken for all suspected cases of measles.