Measles is a viral disease that is very infectious. As a matter of fact, it is one of the most infectious diseases in the world and over the years, it has caused a very large number of deaths globally. There is good news, however. Measles can be prevented. Unfortunately, despite the fact that it is a preventable disease, it causes many deaths in Nigeria and other countries worldwide.
Measles mortality rate in children is very high worldwide – it especially causes a large number of deaths among children who are less than five years old.
Before measles vaccination started, this disease used to cause about 2-6million deaths every year.
In 2000, there were about 31 to 39.9 million cases of measles and about 733,000 to 777,000 died from the disease worldwide. It was the fifth commonest cause of death in children younger than 5 years old.
There were 145,700 deaths from measles all over the world in 2013. That same year, it was found that 16 people died from measles every hour; and so, 400 people died from the disease every day.
In 2015, the number of measles deaths had reduced globally – there were 134,200 deaths, and most of these deaths occurred in children. It was discovered that about 15 people died from disease hourly resulting in about 367 measles deaths daily (in 2015).
Over the years, the measles mortality rate has reduced drastically globally. Sadly, a significant number of deaths that occur from measles nowadays, occur in Africa.
Unfortunately, Nigeria is among the countries that still have the highest number of measles deaths when compared to countries all over the world.
Since measles is a disease that can be prevented, getting the right information on how the disease is spread and how to prevent it would be a great step towards improvement.