Measles outbreak claims 14 lives in Manicaland

A child being vaccinated against measles. Picture: Unicef

A measles outbreak in Mutasa district, Manicaland has claimed 14 lives, the Health and Child Care ministry said.

According to the ministry, a total of 72 cases have been recorded in the district.

‘To date a total of 72 cases and 14 deaths have been reported…only 9 had been vaccinated while the remainder had not been vaccinated or their vaccination status is unknown,” a statement from the ministry says.

“In order to control this outbreak, the ministry has started a mass vaccination campaign in Mutasa District, Manicaland Province targeting the six months to 15 years regardless of their vaccination status”

The ministry advised members of the public to be on alert and report any suspected cases of measles to the nearest health facility.

“The World Health Organization (WHO) has been notified of this outbreak as a requirement,” the ministry added.

Measles is an acute viral respiratory illness.

Its symptoms include cough, runny nose, inflamed eyes, sore throat, fever and a red, blotchy skin rash.