Officials in the northern Afghanistan province of Badakhshan say at least 74 children have died in a measles outbreak in Kuf Ab and Kohistan districts, according to a Afghan Islamic Press report.
Many of the children who died were living in areas with no access to public health facilities, workers or vaccinations.
The provincial health officials have repeatedly called on the population to stay vigilant and to consult the nearest health centers in case of children’s symptoms, including fever, generalized rash, conjunctivitis, cough and cold.
According to local officials, there had been a steady rise in measles cases in the Asian country, particularly in the mountainous northeastern region.
CDC reports a very low (60%) measles vaccination coverage in Afghanistan.
Measles is a highly contagious but vaccine-preventable disease that spreads through coughing, sneezing or other contact with the mucus or saliva of an infected person. Symptoms typically appear 1 to 3 weeks after exposure and include: rash; high fever; cough; and red, watery eyes.
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