Delhi govt to identify high risk zones for measles

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New Delhi: Alarmed with three cases of death reported over the last four months along with a spurt in measles cases, Delhi government has started an exercise to identify the high risk zones in the national capital to control the spread of the disease.

Delhi's Department of Family Welfare has also sent a preliminary report of the survey to WHO India experts.

According to the officials from the Directorate of Family Welfare, around 800 cases of measles has been reported this year in the city.

Almost 450 cases were reported from Maharishi Valmiki Infectious Diseases (MVID) hospital alone between January and March.

"Department is carrying out tests in both children and adults in 4,500 high-risk zones to map measle cases and also identifying trends to ascertain the possible causes of the spike as a part of measure to contain the spread of the disease," said D K Dewan, Director of Department of Family Welfare.

As a part of the exercise, almost 90 lakh people have been screened for measles and many children were vaccinated.

Throat swabs and urine samples of the confirmed 299 cases (till May 21 this year) have been sent to the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

The NCDC has also released guidelines for collection and transportation of patient samples to the nodal agency to check for a possible mutation of the virus.

Measles still continues to remain a major cause of death among children, claiming between 50,000 to 100,000 lives every year in India.  

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