Measles cases surpass 600 in Rawalpindi

Six-day vaccination drive begins across 60 UCs today

Jamil Mirza June 19, 2023


The number of measles cases in Rawalpindi district has exceeded 600, prompting health authorities to take swift action.

The district health authorities have decided to kick off a 6-day vaccination drive aimed at curbing the outbreak on Monday, (today).

Official sources said field staff have completed their training, and the distribution of vaccines has been finalised. The campaign will be supported by the presence of police personnel.

To combat the measles disease, children aged six months to five years will be vaccinated from June 19 to 24. The District Health Authority (DHA) has estimated that 350,000 children fall within this age group and will be targeted for measles vaccination across 60 union councils in the district.

A total of 180 teams will be deployed to ensure the success of the campaign.

Responsibility for administering the vaccine has been assigned to UC MOs, team assistants, and social mobilisers. The Rawalpindi commissioner, deputy commissioner, Commissioner Chaklala, Cantonment executive officers, station headquarters, headquarters ten corps, director of colleges, president of the private schools association, and chief security officers have all been contacted through letters requesting their support during the Measles prevention campaign.

Currently, fifty children afflicted with measles are receiving treatment in various hospitals, while the remaining affected children are being cared for at home with ongoing treatment. Vaccination Supervisor Chaudhry Muhammad Hussain speaking on the issue emphasised that every child between the ages of six months and five years will receive the vaccine.

Parents are advised to take precautionary measures for both the treatment of infected children and the prevention of the disease in healthy children.

Extensive awareness campaigns are being conducted in this regard, he added.

District Health Officer Dr Ehsan Ghani has assured that all preparations have been completed to vaccinate 350,000 children residing within the district's population of 220 million across sixty union councils. The Measles prevention campaign has received an adequate supply of measles vaccines from the DHA.

According to health department sources, there are 24 union councils in the district that have reported a high number of measles cases. Consequently, a focused plan has been devised to prioritise the vaccination of children in these sensitive union councils.


Published in The Express Tribune, June 19th, 2023.


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