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1.
Lancet ; 399(10325): 678-690, 2022 02 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1721141

ABSTRACT

Measles is a highly contagious, potentially fatal, but vaccine-preventable disease caused by measles virus. Symptoms include fever, maculopapular rash, and at least one of cough, coryza, or conjunctivitis, although vaccinated individuals can have milder or even no symptoms. Laboratory diagnosis relies largely on the detection of specific IgM antibodies in serum, dried blood spots, or oral fluid, or the detection of viral RNA in throat or nasopharyngeal swabs, urine, or oral fluid. Complications can affect many organs and often include otitis media, laryngotracheobronchitis, pneumonia, stomatitis, and diarrhoea. Neurological complications are uncommon but serious, and can occur during or soon after the acute disease (eg, acute disseminated encephalomyelitis) or months or even years later (eg, measles inclusion body encephalitis and subacute sclerosing panencephalitis). Patient management mainly involves supportive therapy, such as vitamin A supplementation, monitoring for and treatment of secondary bacterial infections with antibiotics, and rehydration in the case of severe diarrhoea. There is no specific antiviral therapy for the treatment of measles, and disease control largely depends on prevention. However, despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine, measles is still endemic in many countries and causes considerable morbidity and mortality, especially among children in resource-poor settings. The low case numbers reported in 2020, after a worldwide resurgence of measles between 2017 and 2019, have to be interpreted cautiously, owing to the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on disease surveillance. Disrupted vaccination activities during the pandemic increase the potential for another resurgence of measles in the near future, and effective, timely catch-up vaccination campaigns, strong commitment and leadership, and sufficient resources will be required to mitigate this threat.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Endemic Diseases/prevention & control , Mass Vaccination/organization & administration , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Measles/prevention & control , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Communicable Disease Control/standards , Endemic Diseases/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Mass Vaccination/standards , Mass Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , Measles/epidemiology , Measles/immunology , Measles/virology , Measles virus/immunology , Measles virus/pathogenicity , Pandemics/prevention & control
2.
Lancet Glob Health ; 10(2): e288-e292, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1586171

ABSTRACT

Measles virus and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are two important global health pathogens causing substantial morbidity and mortality worldwide. The current measles vaccination schedule has the first dose given at 9-12 months of age and the second dose given at 15-18 months of age. Measles outbreaks have been associated with an increase in severe RSV infections in children younger than 6 months, probably as a result of measles-induced immunosuppression. A resurgence in measles cases was already occurring before the COVID-19 pandemic, which has affected global immunisation programmes, resulting in millions of children, mostly in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs), missing out on their measles vaccine. This will leave many children living in the most vulnerable of circumstances highly susceptible to measles and RSV infections when current COVID-19 public health control measures are lifted. This Viewpoint discusses these issues and highlights the need for urgent action to address this looming crisis. The use of early measles vaccination at 4 months of age could be an effective strategy to prevent severe morbidity and death from both measles and RSV infections in many LMICs.


Subject(s)
Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Measles/prevention & control , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/prevention & control , COVID-19/epidemiology , Developing Countries , Global Health , Humans , Immunocompetence/immunology , Measles/complications , Pandemics , Respiratory Syncytial Virus, Human , SARS-CoV-2
3.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(45): 1563-1569, 2021 Nov 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1513269

ABSTRACT

In 2012, the World Health Assembly endorsed the Global Vaccine Action Plan,* with the objective of eliminating measles† in five of the six World Health Organization (WHO) regions by 2020 (1). The Immunization Agenda 2021-2030 (IA2030)§ uses measles incidence as an indicator of the strength of immunization systems. The Measles-Rubella Strategic Framework 2021-2030¶ and the Measles Outbreaks Strategic Response Plan 2021-2023** are aligned with the IA2030 and highlight robust measles surveillance systems to document immunity gaps, identify root causes of undervaccination, and develop locally tailored solutions to ensure administration of 2 doses of measles-containing vaccine (MCV) to all children. This report describes progress toward World Health Assembly milestones and measles elimination objectives during 2000-2020 and updates a previous report (2). During 2000-2010, estimated MCV first dose (MCV1) coverage increased globally from 72% to 84%, peaked at 86% in 2019, but declined to 84% in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic. All countries conducted measles surveillance, although fewer than one third achieved the sensitivity indicator target of ≥2 discarded†† cases per 100,000 population in 2020. Annual reported measles incidence decreased 88% during 2000-2016, from 145 to 18 cases per 1 million population, rebounded to 120 in 2019, before falling to 22 in 2020. During 2000-2020, the annual number of estimated measles deaths decreased 94%, from 1,072,800 to 60,700, averting an estimated 31.7 million measles deaths. To achieve regional measles elimination targets, enhanced efforts are needed to reach all children with 2 MCV doses, implement robust surveillance, and identify and close immunity gaps.


Subject(s)
Disease Eradication , Global Health/statistics & numerical data , Measles/prevention & control , Child , Humans , Immunization Programs , Incidence , Infant , Measles/epidemiology , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , World Health Organization
4.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(43): 1495-1500, 2021 10 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1498052

ABSTRACT

Endorsed by the World Health Assembly in 2020, the Immunization Agenda 2030 (IA2030) strives to reduce morbidity and mortality from vaccine-preventable diseases across the life course (1). This report, which updates a previous report (2), presents global, regional,* and national vaccination coverage estimates and trends as of 2020. Changes are described in vaccination coverage and the numbers of unvaccinated and undervaccinated children as measured by receipt of the first and third doses of diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis-containing vaccine (DTP) in 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic began, compared with 2019. Global estimates of coverage with the third dose of DTP (DTP3) and a polio vaccine (Pol3) decreased from 86% in 2019 to 83% in 2020. Similarly, coverage with the first dose of measles-containing vaccine (MCV1) dropped from 86% in 2019 to 84% in 2020. The last year that coverage estimates were at 2020 levels was 2009 for DTP3 and 2014 for both MCV1 and Pol3. Worldwide, 22.7 million children (17% of the target population) were not vaccinated with DTP3 in 2020 compared with 19.0 million (14%) in 2019. Children who did not receive the first DTP dose (DTP1) by age 12 months (zero-dose children) accounted for 95% of the increased number. Among those who did not receive DTP3 in 2020, approximately 17.1 million (75%) were zero-dose children. Global coverage decreased in 2020 compared with 2019 estimates for the completed series of Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), hepatitis B vaccine (HepB), human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV), and rubella-containing vaccine (RCV). Full recovery from COVID-19-associated disruptions will require targeted, context-specific strategies to identify and catch up zero-dose and undervaccinated children, introduce interventions to minimize missed vaccinations, monitor coverage, and respond to program setbacks (3).


Subject(s)
Global Health , Vaccination Coverage/statistics & numerical data , Vaccines/administration & dosage , Adolescent , Child , Child, Preschool , Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis Vaccine/administration & dosage , Goals , Humans , Immunization Programs , Immunization Schedule , Infant , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Poliovirus Vaccines/administration & dosage , World Health Organization
5.
Pan Afr Med J ; 39: 192, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1405544

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: following the declaration of the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries imposed restrictions on public gatherings, health workers were repurposed for COVID-19 response, and public demand for preventive health services declined due to fear of getting COVID-19 in health care settings. These factors led to the disruption in health service delivery, including childhood immunization, in the first months of the pandemic. Measles surveillance supported with laboratory confirmation, is implemented in the African Region as part of the strategies towards attaining measles elimination. World Health Organisation developed guidelines to assist countries to continue to safely provide essential health services including immunization and the surveillance of vaccine preventable diseases during the pandemic. METHODS: we analysed the measles case-based surveillance and laboratory databases for the years 2014 to 2020, to determine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on measles surveillance, comparing the performance in 2020 against the preceding years. RESULTS: the weekly reporting of suspected measles cases declined starting in April 2020. Twelve countries had more than 50% decline in both the number of reported cases as well as in the number of specimens collected in 2020, as compared to the mean for the years 2014-2018. In 2020, only 30% of the specimens from suspected measles cases arrived at the national laboratory within 3 days of collection. At Regional level, 86% of the districts reported suspected measles cases in 2020, while the non-measles febrile rash illness rate was 2.1 per 100,000 population, which was the lowest rate documented since 2014. Only 11 countries met the targets for the two principal surveillance performance indicators in 2020 as compared to an average of 21 countries in the years 2014-2019. CONCLUSION: the overall quality of measles surveillance has declined during the COVID pandemic in many countries. Countries should implement immediate and proactive measures to revitalise active surveillance for measles and monitor the quality of surveillance. We recommend that countries consider implementing specimen collection and testing methods that can facilitate timely confirmation of suspected measles cases in remote communities and areas with transportation challenges.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Measles/epidemiology , Population Surveillance/methods , Africa/epidemiology , Humans , Immunization Programs , Measles/prevention & control , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Vaccination , World Health Organization
8.
BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 578, 2021 04 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1175311

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Communities with low vaccination rates are at greater risk during outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases. Most Australian parents support vaccines, but some refuse and are often judged harshly by their community, especially during an outbreak. We sought the perspectives of Australian public health experts on the key issues faced when managing a measles outbreak in an area with high anti-vaccination sentiment. METHODS: A measles outbreak scenario formed the basis of a 3-round modified Delphi process to identify key practitioner concerns in relation to parents/carers who don't follow the recommended vaccination schedule. We surveyed a range of professionals in the field: policymakers, infectious disease experts, immunisation program staff, and others involved in delivering childhood vaccinations, to identify key priorities when responding to an outbreak in a community with low vaccination coverage. RESULTS: Findings indicate that responses to measles outbreaks in communities with high anti-vaccination sentiment are motivated by concerns about the potential for a much larger outbreak event. The highest operational priority is to isolate infected children. The two most highly ranked practical issues are mistrust from non-vaccinating members of the local region and combatting misinformation about vaccines. Trying to change minds of such individuals is not a priority during an outbreak, nor is vaccinating their children. Using media and social media to provide information about the outbreak and measures the public can take to limit the spread of the disease was a focus. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings provide a deeper understanding of the challenges faced during an outbreak and priorities for communicating with communities where there is a high level of anti-vaccination sentiment. In the context of a global pandemic, the results of this study also have implications for managing public health responses to community transmission of SARS-CoV-2, as COVID-19 vaccines becomes widely available.


Subject(s)
Attitude of Health Personnel , Disease Outbreaks , Measles Vaccine , Measles , Public Health , Vaccination , Australia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Child , Disease Outbreaks/prevention & control , Humans , Measles/epidemiology , Measles/prevention & control , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Vaccination/psychology
9.
Epidemiol Infect ; 149: e75, 2021 03 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1147817

ABSTRACT

We investigated whether countries with higher coverage of childhood live vaccines [BCG or measles-containing-vaccine (MCV)] have reduced risk of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-related mortality, while accounting for known systems differences between countries. In this ecological study of 140 countries using publicly available national-level data, higher vaccine coverage, representing estimated proportion of people vaccinated during the last 14 years, was associated with lower COVID-19 deaths. The associations attenuated for both vaccine variables, and MCV coverage became no longer significant once adjusted for published estimates of the Healthcare access and quality index (HAQI), a validated summary score of healthcare quality indicators. The magnitude of association between BCG coverage and COVID-19 death rate varied according to HAQI, and MCV coverage had little effect on the association between BCG and COVID-19 deaths. While there are associations between live vaccine coverage and COVID-19 outcomes, the vaccine coverage variables themselves were strongly correlated with COVID-19 testing rate, HAQI and life expectancy. This suggests that the population-level associations may be further confounded by differences in structural health systems and policies. Cluster randomised studies of booster vaccines would be ideal to evaluate the efficacy of trained immunity in preventing COVID-19 infections and mortality in vaccinated populations and on community transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Immunity, Innate/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccination Coverage/statistics & numerical data , BCG Vaccine/administration & dosage , BCG Vaccine/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , Delivery of Health Care/standards , Delivery of Health Care/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Immunization, Secondary/standards , Immunization, Secondary/statistics & numerical data , Linear Models , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Measles Vaccine/immunology , Quality of Health Care/standards , Quality of Health Care/statistics & numerical data
11.
Vaccine ; 39(8): 1201-1204, 2021 02 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-965867

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home orders have caused an unprecedented decrease in the administration of routinely recommended vaccines. However, the impact of this decrease on overall vaccination coverage in a specific birth cohort is not known. METHODS: We projected measles vaccination coverage for the cohort of children becoming one year old in 2020 in the United States, for different durations of stay-at-home orders, along with varying catch-up vaccination efforts. RESULTS: A 15% sustained catch-up rate outside stay-at-home orders (compared to what would be expected via natality information) may be necessary to achieve projected vaccination coverage similar to previous years. Permanent decreases in vaccine administration could lead to projected vaccination coverage levels below 80%. CONCLUSION: Modeling measles vaccination coverage under a range of scenarios provides useful information about the potential magnitude and impact of under-immunization. Sustained catch-up efforts are needed to assure that measles vaccination coverage remains high.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Pandemics , Vaccination Coverage , Child , Child, Preschool , Humans , Infant , Measles/prevention & control , United States
13.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 117(45): 28506-28514, 2020 11 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-892049

ABSTRACT

The United States experienced historically high numbers of measles cases in 2019, despite achieving national measles vaccination rates above the World Health Organization recommendation of 95% coverage with two doses. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, resulting in suspension of many clinical preventive services, pediatric vaccination rates in the United States have fallen precipitously, dramatically increasing risk of measles resurgence. Previous research has shown that measles outbreaks in high-coverage contexts are driven by spatial clustering of nonvaccination, which decreases local immunity below the herd immunity threshold. However, little is known about how to best conduct surveillance and target interventions to detect and address these high-risk areas, and most vaccination data are reported at the state-level-a resolution too coarse to detect community-level clustering of nonvaccination characteristic of recent outbreaks. In this paper, we perform a series of computational experiments to assess the impact of clustered nonvaccination on outbreak potential and magnitude of bias in predicting disease risk posed by measuring vaccination rates at coarse spatial scales. We find that, when nonvaccination is locally clustered, reporting aggregate data at the state- or county-level can result in substantial underestimates of outbreak risk. The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a bright light on the weaknesses in US infectious disease surveillance and a broader gap in our understanding of how to best use detailed spatial data to interrupt and control infectious disease transmission. Our research clearly outlines that finer-scale vaccination data should be collected to prevent a return to endemic measles transmission in the United States.


Subject(s)
Epidemics/statistics & numerical data , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Measles/epidemiology , Models, Statistical , Space-Time Clustering , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , Bias , Data Accuracy , Epidemics/prevention & control , Epidemiological Monitoring , Humans , Measles/prevention & control , Measles Vaccine/therapeutic use , United States
14.
Vaccine ; 38(45): 7146-7155, 2020 10 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-713091

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 pandemic has affected routine immunization globally. Impact will likely be higher in low and middle-income countries with limited healthcare resources and fragile health systems. We quantified the impact, spatial heterogeneity, and determinants for childhood immunizations of 48 million population affected in the Sindh province of Pakistan. METHODS: We extracted individual immunization records from real-time provincial Electronic Immunization Registry from September 23, 2019, to July 11, 2020. Comparing baseline (6 months preceding the lockdown) and the COVID-19 lockdown period, we analyzed the impact on daily immunization coverage rate for each antigen by geographical area. We used multivariable logistic regression to explore the predictors associated with immunizations during the lockdown. RESULTS: There was a 52.5% decline in the daily average total number of vaccinations administered during lockdown compared to baseline. The highest decline was seen for Bacille Cal-mette Guérin (BCG) (40.6% (958/2360) immunization at fixed sites. Around 8438 children/day were missing immunization during the lockdown. Enrollments declined furthest in rural districts, urban sub-districts with large slums, and polio-endemic super high-risk sub-districts. Pentavalent-3 (penta-3) immunization rates were higher in infants born in hospitals (RR: 1.09; 95% CI: 1.04-1.15) and those with mothers having higher education (RR: 1.19-1.50; 95% CI: 1.13-1.65). Likelihood of penta-3 immunization was reduced by 5% for each week of delayed enrollment into the immunization program. CONCLUSION: One out of every two children in Sindh province has missed their routine vaccinations during the provincial COVID-19 lockdown. The pool of un-immunized children is expanding during lockdown, leaving them susceptible to vaccine-preventable diseases. There is a need for tailored interventions to promote immunization visits and safe service delivery. Higher maternal education, facility-based births, and early enrollment into the immunization program continue to show a positive association with immunization uptake, even during a challenging lockdown.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/psychology , Measles/prevention & control , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/psychology , Quarantine , Rotavirus Infections/prevention & control , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/prevention & control , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , BCG Vaccine/administration & dosage , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Electronic Data Processing , Female , Humans , Immunization Programs/statistics & numerical data , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Measles/epidemiology , Measles/immunology , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Pakistan/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Registries , Rotavirus Infections/epidemiology , Rotavirus Infections/immunology , Rotavirus Vaccines/administration & dosage , Rural Population , SARS-CoV-2 , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/epidemiology , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/immunology , Urban Population , Vaccination/psychology , Vaccination Coverage/statistics & numerical data , Vaccines, Attenuated/administration & dosage
16.
Euro Surveill ; 25(31)2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-696369

ABSTRACT

The number of measles cases declined in European Union/European Economic Area countries and the United Kingdom in 2020. Reported cases to The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control decreased from 710 to 54 between January and May. Epidemic intelligence screening observed a similar trend. Under-diagnoses and under-reporting during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic should be ruled out before concluding reduced measles circulation is because of social distancing and any community control measures taken to control COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Coronavirus , Measles/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , European Union , Humans , Measles/prevention & control , Measles Vaccine/administration & dosage , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Population Surveillance , SARS-CoV-2 , United Kingdom/epidemiology
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