MILLIONS GET JAB FOR MEASLES

MORE THAN three million people were vaccinated against measles in Gauteng during the expanded vaccination campaign.

MORE THAN three million people were vaccinated against measles in Gauteng during the expanded vaccination campaign.

The provincial department of health and social development spent more than R15 million on this, one of the biggest campaigns ever.

The biggest previously recorded outbreak was in 1992 when more than 20000 cases were reported.

At present 2140 cases have been confirmed across the country. Gauteng is the worst affected, followed by North West and KwaZulu-Natal.

Gauteng health spokesperson Mandla Sidu said yesterday that more than 3million people had been vaccinated against measles since October 12.

"We do not have the exact figures at present but the numbers we have indicate that we have exceeded our target. We will continue with the campaign," he said.

The department also recently immunised about 5000 inmates at Johannesburg Prison after a measles outbreak at the facility. More than 100 cases were detected.

The campaign has seen health workers visiting schools and crèches, targeting children from the age of six months to high school pupils.

Gauteng MEC for health and social development Qedani Mahlangu has urged parents to return consent forms to schools and crèches so that their children can be immunised.

"It is regrettable that some parents have yet to sign the relevant forms. We want to urge all parent to cooperate because it will minimise the spread of this disease, which is otherwise easily prevented" Mahlangu said.

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