Why Is Measles Surging In South Africa?

Measles Cases Are Spiking Globally

The number of measles cases reported worldwide has rapidly increased by 79% in just the first two months of 2022. When compared to the same time period in 2021 (UNICEF, 2022).

Just across our border, a measles’ outbreak in Zimbabwe has killed more than 704 children and infected 6,500 others (Marima, & Nolen, 2022). These numbers are based on the last report published on the 6th of September. There may be many more affected families since then.

What’s Causing This Measles Spike?

Health officials have linked this surge in Measles to a drop in vaccinations after the pandemic (Marima, & Nolen, 2022). 25 million of children in poorer countries like Zimbabwe have missed some or all of their childhood vaccinations, according to the WHO (2022).

COVID-19 had so many unexpected and unintended ripple effects. But one of its worst impacts for children has been the massive backslide in basic vaccinations for babies and young children (WHO, 2021). This was a problem before COVID, but the virus only made things worse.

COVID disrupted childhood vaccines by:

✔ Parents were anxious about exposing their children to COVID and so kept their children well away from clinics.

✔ Healthcare workers were reassigned from routine vaccinations to COVID-19.

✔ Families were forced to move and so lost all their healthcare information as they changed their primary clinics.

Is The Combination Measles (MMR) Vaccination Safe?

Get a closer look at this important issue & see what Peter Hotez Md, PhD, the father of an autistic child, has to say about the MMR vaccine.

South African scientists watched measles decline over the last 2 decades, this was linked to a global lowering of cases of measles. Cue the COVID-19 pandemic. In the early months of 2020, 6000 people died. Post pandemic, we have seen the worst measles numbers since 1996 (Nchasi et al., 2022).

Dr Kerrigan McCarthy, a pathologist at the Centre for Vaccines and Immunology at the NICD (our partner organization), believes, “we are sitting on the cusp of a very large measles’ outbreak” (Voigt, 2022). If roughly a million children are born in South Africa each year and only 75% are vaccinated, then about 250,000 children (25%) are not protected against measles (Voigt, 2022). Each year, this adds up.

Studying Measles In South Africa

We partnered with the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) and Genesis Analytics to collect vital public health data.

Durng the SAMS study, we learnt about how many people may have been infected with or vaccinated for COVID-19 and other infectious diseases in South African communities.

Who Is Epicentre Health Research?

We’re an NGO with 21 years of expertise in the South African health research industry.

Our Guarantee is evidence based, structured & planned, electronically executed, monitored & evaluated, and customized to meet each research project’s needs.

South Africa’s 2022 Measles Outbreak: Everything You Want to Know

Measles is one of the world’s most contagious diseases, & it’s making waves in SA right now. Learn more about this deadly childhood disease.

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