Miss Samoa sends touching message as measles crisis escalates
The escalating crisis unfolding in Samoa where 32 people have died as a result of the measles outbreak is not lost on Miss Samoa, Fonoifafo Nancy McFarland.
In a touching message from Ms. McFarland, who is in Papua New Guinea to vie for the Miss Pacific Island title this weekend, she expresses her deepest sympathy for the loss of lives and urges everyone in Samoa to get vaccinated.
“Our hearts are saddened to hear that more lives have been lost due to measles,” she said in a post on the Miss Samoa Facebook page.
“Please families, get yourselves and your children vaccinated. Measles is a highly contagious virus. It is no joke!”
Ms. McFarland, who is a nurse by profession, also offered tips for families who need help.
“Look out for the symptoms of: sore red eyes, cough, runny nose, rash or high fever. Contact your GP if you have more questions.”
Lastly, she encouraged everyone to be strong.
“We keep our country close in prayer, especially during this time.”
The theme of this year’s Pageant is “Pacific We Are, One Step, One Aspiration.”
The measles crisis death toll as of Tuesday afternoon is 32, seven more deaths than the update the Government had issued on Monday.
Of all the deaths, 28 are children under the age of 4, one from the 10-14 years age bracket, two from the 15-19 years age bracket and one from the 30-39 years age bracket.
Some 234 new cases of measles were recorded during the past 24 hours.
The Government has today lifted the travel ban it has imposed for people under 19 to travel between Upolu and Savaii.