India helps Maldives tackle measles outbreak

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News: India dispatched over 30,000 doses of measles and rubella (MR) vaccine to the Maldives.

Facts:

Measles and Rubella

  • Measles and Rubella (German measles) are a contagious viral disease that is spread by contact with an infected person through coughing and sneezing. Measles is caused by Rubeola virus and Rubella is caused by Rubella virus.
  • Both of them can be entirely prevented with a two-dose of MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella) vaccine.

Elimination Efforts

India:

  • India has initiated the world’s largest Measles-Rubella (MR) Campaign in 2017. It targets vaccination of 410 million children and adolescents aged between 9 months and 15 years.
  • It is also covered under Mission Indradhanaush. Launched in 2014, the mission aims to cover all those children by 2020 who are either unvaccinated or are partially vaccinated against vaccine-preventable diseases

Global:

  • Global Vaccine Action Plan: Under the Global Vaccine Action Plan, WHO has targeted to eliminate measles by 2020
  • ‘Measles Elimination and Rubella/CRS Control by 2020’: In 2013, WHO SEAR initiated ‘Measles Elimination and Rubella/CRS Control by 2020’. It seeks to curb and control measles and rubella through immunization, surveillance and developing and maintaining an accredited measles laboratory network. 

Additional Information:

  • India and Maldives have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Health cooperation in 2019.
  • The MoU envisages capacity building and training of doctors and medical professionals, disease surveillance, training of mental health professionals, setting up of digital health capacities in Maldives.