Still Too Early To Predict Epidemic Peak

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  • Ministry of Health CEO Leausa Dr. Take Naseri, not in a position to note if the measles epidemic is any closer to peaking
    Ministry of Health CEO Leausa Dr. Take Naseri, not in a position to note if the measles epidemic is any closer to peaking

Just over half the 62,000 people targeted for vaccination are covered but it is still not enough for the Ministry of Health to hazard a guess on when the measles epidemic may peak.

Ministry of Health CEO Leausa Dr. Take Naseri, is reluctant to make any predications.

“So far we have only covered 33,085 of our set target,” Leausa told Newsline Samoa.

“The measles virus is highly contagious and can spread very quickly, so I don’t want to give people false hopes with any predictions that are not met in the end.”

The mass vaccination campaign is now onto its second week concentrating mainly on the most vulnerable target groups of children from 19 years and under.

Women who are at children bearing age are also included from 20 years up to 35 years .

“ On Monday the campaign opens up to everyone,” Leausa said.

Overseas medical teams and vaccines coming from Australia and New Zealand have been helping out since the measles outbreak.

The extra help is a major relief for the local health workers with a massive workload to bring the epidemic under control as quickly as possible.

“The South Pacific Commission is also organising nursing teams from the Solomon Is and other Pacific Islands to come and help us out.

“Nurses from Tahiti are coming as well to be involved with the administration of injections and to work inside our Intensive Care Unit.”

An added concern for the Health Ministry is having to attend to the growing number of serious cases of diabetes and high blood pressure as well.

The Ministry has been networking with other Government Ministries where their support in needed and that included the use of the police patrol boat for emergency runs to American Samoa.

“The police patrol boat has been making runs to transport oxygen tanks from American Samoa for our hospital use.

“ Our normal supplies come from Fiji but American Samoa is closer so we are take advantage of that for now.”

Leausa confirmed more supplies to be loaded onto the inter-island ferry the Salamasina on her return run from the neighbouring territory.

 

 

 

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