1059 measles cases confirmed nationwide

By Taroi Black

The measles outbreak continues to rise across Aotearoa. one 1059 cases have been recorded nationally and it has hit South Auckland more than anywhere else and is making its way to the Waikato region.

Auckland and Counties Manukau DHB have recorded eight hundred and eighty one cases in the Auckland region. 

Auckland Regional Medical Officer of Health, Dr William Rainger says, "Measles is not a trivial illness, it can be a very serious illness. It's preventable by vaccination. Our advice is, if you have children you should have them vaccinated."

Approximately twenty five percent of measles case have been Maori and the Ministry of Health is committed to supporting whānau Māori.

 "We know that a number of providers who also offering vaccinations for children and so the Ministry's role is to support those different services to make sure that they are appropriate and that they are acceptable to our Māori community," says Dr Caroline McElnay, Ministry o Health Director of Public Health.

South Auckland shows the majority of measles cases recorded to date which are now sitting at six hundred and five. 

Dr McElnay says, "There's an ongoing process to ensure those services are meeting the needs of our Māori communities and our Māori whānau."

The Auckland Public Health Service confirmed that forty percent of those hospitalized by measles are Māori. 

Last week the Prime Minister says more work is needed to ensure parents vaccinate their children. 

"Again, I can not state this more clearly the best thing now is make sure that people are immunized. Again, I think this is one of the issues that globally we are contending with and that is a movement of people to try and convince people that they shouldn't be immunized."  

Health professionals are advising parents not to delay getting children vaccinated at twelve months and at four years.