Measles outbreak: Death toll in Democratic Republic of Congo tops 6,000

The death toll from a measles epidemic in the Democratic Republic of Congo has topped 6,000, the World Health Organisation has announced.
It has now called for more funds to save lives during the world’s worst outbreak of the infectious disease.

Measles has killed nearly three times as many people in Congo than an Ebola outbreak in the country that has garnered far more international attention.
Meanwhile medics have come under regular attack from armed militias operating in the country.
Announcing a new appeal, the WHO said lack of funding remains a huge impediment to successfully curbing the outbreak.


Image: At least 2,231 people have died of Ebola since August 2018
While $27.6m (£21m) has already has been raised to curb the measles epidemic, WHO said that $40m (£30.5m) is needed for a special six-month plan to vaccinate older children between the ages of six and 14.

A vaccine against measles has existed for decades but some 310,000 cases have been reported in Congo since the beginning of 2019.

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Health workers struggle to access remote parts of the vast country, and vaccination rates remain low in areas where armed groups operate.
Many health resources in Congo this year have been devoted to the simultaneous outbreak of Ebola, which has become the second worst in history after the 2014-2016 West Africa epidemic.
At least 2,231 people have died of Ebola since that outbreak was first identified in August 2018.

Source : Sky News