By News Desk  @infectiousdiseasenews

In a follow-up on the 2019-2020 Tonga measles outbreak, the Government of Tonga reports six new measles case-patients in Tongatapu and Vava’u and 12 cases were added retrospectively, bringing the outbreak total to 630 confirmed or suspected cases.


The majority of measles cases, about 88 percent, have occurred on Tongatapu, and a little over 10 percent of cases have occurred on Vava’u Island. Nineteen people required hospitalization and no deaths have been reported.

It is estimated that at least 99% of the 630 reported measles cases will have already recovered from their illnesses.

The outbreak of measles in Tonga began in early October 2019, following the return of a national youth team of Tongan rugby players from New Zealand. The index case developed measles while in New Zealand. Subsequently, a further 12 teammates developed laboratory-confirmed measles. The early outbreak involved mainly teenagers from associated schools on Tongatapu and Vava’u Islands. Since the initial two waves of the outbreak, cases were widely reported in all age groups but are now waning.