2 suspected measles cases come out as negative

2 suspected measles cases come out as negative

By Iva Danford
Thursday 28/11/2019

The 25 year old pregnant woman from Samabula and a 1-year-old child from Vatuwaqa who were the latest measles cases admitted at the CWM Hospital, have been discharged from isolation.

The confirmed number of measles cases still stands at 13.

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The Health Ministry says the latest confirmed cases are a 22 year old from Wailali Settlement, a 16-year-old from Navunikabi and the 1-year-old child from Vatuwaqa.

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The Health Ministry states that currently there are no confirmed measles patients admitted in CWM Hospital, but this can change.

They say some restrictions are now in place for CWM which includes the new visiting hour which is from 2pm to 3pm from Monday to Sunday, only one visitor will be allowed for each patient during the stated visiting hour and the restrictions to visiting the intensive care unit for children and adults and the designated Measles Isolation wards will be in place.

The Health Ministry also adds that Triage sites are set up to assess and treat children, adults and pregnant mothers.

All the confirmed cases are in the Central Division.

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Suspected cases continue to be reported, tested, and cleared when their results are confirmed negative by the National Public Health Laboratory.

The Ministry has also confirmed that an 11-year-old student of the Fiji School for the Blind and a 1-year-old Kiribati national have tested negative and were cleared.

The Ministry say that respective Sub-divisional Outbreak Response Teams continue to rapidly respond to notification of all cases and will not wait for a case to be confirmed by laboratory testing before launching the necessary interventions to prevent spread of the disease.

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They say the response includes isolation of the case, quarantine and vaccination of contacts and at-risk communities.

The Ministry states that the measles vaccine is now in limited supply and therefore will be prioritized to those who are at the greatest risk of catching and spreading measles.

They say currently the free vaccine is only available to children as per the routine national immunization schedule and this is at 12 months and 18 months of age. This includes children who have not received those 2 dozes of the vaccine as scheduled.

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The free vaccine is also available to the residents of Serua/Namosi.

The Ministry also stated that this current restriction will change after the new vaccine stock arrives later this week when it will be made available to further targeted groups identified by the Measles Taskforce. 

The symptoms of measles are fever and a rash with a runny nose, sneezing, cough, red and watery eyes and white spots inside the mouth.

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The rash starts after the other symptoms and spreads all over the body.

Measles is a highly infectious airborne viral disease that spreads easily through the air through breathing, coughing, and sneezing.

You are at risk of getting measles if you breathe the same air as someone with the disease and you are not immune if you have not been vaccinated, or you have never had the disease.

There is no specific treatment for measles, as it is the body’s immune system that fights off the disease.

Most people recover from measles infection in 8-10 days with rest and ensuring that they are eating and drinking to avoid dehydration.

Some people infected with measles develop severe complications such as pneumonia or encephalitis (brain swelling).

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