Measles and typhoid outbreaks in Tajikistan
11 December 2002
Two outbreaks - one typhoid the other measles - have struck the Jirgital District in the Rasht Valley of Tajikistan simultaneously. The first cases of measles were reported in August and September in the neighbouring districts of Garm and Tajikabad. After lobbying activities by MSF in October, the measles epidemic was acknowledged at the beginning of November. Between 20,000 to 23,000 children, aged between one year and 15 years old, are to be vaccinated in Jirgital alone. Officially, some 90% of the children are vaccinated, but MSF estimates that in reality it is less than 45%. There are indications that the epidemic has spread throughout the rest of the valley and MSF is lobbying other aid organisations to expand the campaign over the entire Rasht Valley region, targeting 123,000 persons. Typhoid There are 59 people with typhoid who been hospitalised in the community of Salikinjer. A latrine-contaminated water source is the suspected source of the outbreak. Water and sanitation equipment, chlorination kits, medical supplies, food and blankets have been sent to the community whilst coordinated efforts with the local medical staff are underway to deal with the problem.