CERF allocates $2.7 million in response to measles outbreak in Sudan
In response to the intensifying outbreak in the country, CERF has allocated $2.7 million for response in Sudan. The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization (WHO) will receive some $1.3 million and some $1.4 million respectively for emergency response to the measles outbreak.
In Sudan, population movements, malnutrition, poor infrastructure and lack of routine immunization coverage all contribute to the measles outbreak among children. As of 20 February 2011, about 154 confirmed cases were recorded in 5 states. According to data from the Ministry of Health, almost 30 to 35 per cent of children under five years old are not immune against measles due to low routine coverage and vaccination failure.
In October 2010, a measles outbreak started in North Kordofan state. Cases continued to be reported in February 2011 and almost 900,000 children under five are estimated to be at risk of contracting the measles virus. Reports of measles cases are now also being reported in the Darfur region, where two deaths have been reported. Recent conflicts and population movements have exacerbated the outbreak.
This situation calls for immediate action because if the measles outbreak is not controlled, it will lead to high mortality. Should the outbreaks be allowed to continue, they will have a detrimental effect on the health of children and the achievements Sudan has made through its elimination efforts over the last six years.
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