Three more deaths as epidemic's toll climbs

A total of three new deaths from measles have been confirmed in the last day bringing the national death toll from the epidemic to 42, as the daily number of new patients diagnosed by the virus continues to surge. 

A National Emergency Operation Centre (N.E.O.C.) press statement released on Friday confirmed that 213 new cases have been reported to the Government's Disease Surveillance Team in the past day. That brings the total number of infections to 3,149 since the outbreak's official declaration in mid-October.

Those infected by the virus include 20 critically ill children in either hospital being treated in a hospital Intensive Care Unit or High-Dependency Unit.

Three pregnant women - who cannot receive the measles vaccine under Government guidelines - are also being treated at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital (T.T.M.H.).

Currently 197 patients are receiving in-patient care across Samoa's hospitals. 

The majority of those being treated in hospital, 168, are at the national hospital, T.T.M.H.; three at Poutasi District Hospital; two at Lalomanu District Hospital; 21 at the Leulumoega Rural District Hospital; and three at the Malietoa Tanumafili II Hospital. 

The Government also provided an update on the progress of its mass vaccination campaign, which aims to have all children vaccinated. 

Since the campaign's commencement on November 20, the Ministry of Health says has successfully vaccinated 50,068 individuals, of that 37,309 were vaccinated in Upolu and 12,759 in Savaii.

The Government says that total number of measles cases admitted to all hospitals recorded for the outbreak to date is 915.  Of that, 676 patients have been discharged.

But the Ministry warns there remains a low turnout rate of infants and children aged 6 months to 4 years old. Children in that age bracket account for 32 of the nation's death toll, according to official Government statistics. 

The breakdown of the Government's statistics on the death toll and the progress of its mass vaccination campaign are as follows:

A breakdown of the statistics is as follows:


Age group

Measles cases last 24 hours

Total measles cases 

Total measles-related deaths 

0-5 months

11

225

6

6-11 months

22

391

12

01-4 years

40

985

20

05-9 years

21

300

0

10-14 years

11

96

1

15-19 years

29

325

2

20-29 years

48

475

0

30-39 years

16

199

1

40-49 years

14

90

0

50+ years

1

13

0

missing age

0

50

0

Total

213

3149

42

* Table subject to update as new data becomes available

VACCINATION UPDATE:

A total of 32,743 vaccinations were completed before the Mass Vaccination Campaign. Of these, the age groups are outlined below: 

  • 6months to 4 years – 4222

  • 5 to 19 years – 14,145

  • 20 to 39 years – 9,283

  • 40-49 years – 3058

  • 50+ - 2035

Since the activation of the Mass Vaccination Campaign on 20 November 2019, the Ministry has successfully vaccinated 50,068 individuals, of that 37,309 were vaccinated in Upolu and 12,759 in Savaii.

There remains a low turnout rate of infants and children aged 6 months to 4 years old. The Ministry of Health strongly advises families and parents to bring the children in for vaccination.





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