Another death after three-day reprieve

By Sapeer Mayron 16 December 2019, 3:18PM

There was another measles-related death on Sunday, and 57 new cases of measles bringing the total number of cases to 5,267 and the death toll to 73, according to Government data released on Monday. 

The National Emergency Operations Centre (N.E.O.C.), which over the weekend reported no deaths between Thursday and Saturday, said there had been one fatality recorded in the past 24 hours.

The number of inpatients with measles are dropping, with 139 across all hospitals, down from 150 reported on Sunday. 109 are in Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital and 16 are critically ill children.

There are 17 inpatients in the measles only hospital at Leulumoega District Hospital, four in Poutasi and two in Lalomanu. Savaii has seven patients across its three hospitals.

The N.E.O.C reports 93 per cent of eligible Samoans have been vaccinated against measles, but has not revealed the extent to which the vulnerable groups of children and women are vaccinated. 

The World Health Organisation states populations should be 95 per cent immune to prevent outbreaks of disease.

While the Government continues to strive to reach the 95 per cent benchmark the state of emergency which has clamped down on public gatherings and restrictions on young people's travel and public presences will not be lifted until December 29.

Children under 19 remain banned from public gatherings and under-14s travelling between Savaii and Upolu must provide proof of their vaccination status. 

The Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Dr. Sailele Malielegaoi, said there are still 579 children under 18 who are not vaccinated, among a total of 16,000 across the country.


The Ministry of Health confirms a total of 5,267 measles cases have been reported to the Disease Surveillance Team, since the outbreak started.  There were 57 recorded in the last 24 hours for Upolu, and no new cases for Savai’i.   

There are currently 139 measles cases who are in-patients at all health facilities. Of this, 109 are at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital; four are at Poutasi District Hospital; two are at Lalomanu District Hospital; 17 at the Leulumoega Rural District Hospital; one at the Malietoa Tanumafili II Hospital; four at Foailalo District Hospital and 2 at Safotu District Hospital.   

Admissions include 16 critically ill children in Intensive Care or High Dependency Units.

The total number of measles cases admitted to all hospitals recorded for the outbreak to date is 1,684.  Of that, 1,472 (87 per cent) patients have been discharged. 

To date, 73 measles related deaths have been recorded, with 1 fatality in the last 24 hours.

As of December 15, 2019, approximately 93% of all eligible people in Samoa have been vaccinated against measles.


By Sapeer Mayron 16 December 2019, 3:18PM
Samoa Observer

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