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Angela Paraschiv: Measles is much more contagious than COVID-19

A high risk of spread of measles persists in Moldova. According to state secretary of the Ministry of Health Angela Paraschiv, the rate of vaccination against measles decreased compared to the period before the COVID-19 pandemic. Given that Romania and Ukraine witness a large number of cases of measles, there is a risk that Moldova will also face a wave of diseases, IPN reports.

The state secretary of the Ministry of Health Angela noted that measles is much more contagious than COVID-19. The unvaccinated children are the most suspectable.

“Measles is much more contagious compared to other respiratory infections, including COVID-19. In the case of COVID-19, one person can infect another person or at most three other people. In the case of measles, we are talking about much higher contagiousness, when one person can infect 18 other people. The virus is transmitted at much greater distances, up to 20 meters. The unvaccinated ones and not only children, but also adults are especially vulnerable. In addition to the cases reported in children, there is one case involving a 35-year-old adult. Even if this is an imported case, anyway any unvaccinated person is at risk,” Angela Paraschiv stated in the program “Common Objective” on TVR Moldova channel.

According to the functionary, measles vaccination coverage in Moldova is almost 85%, while the World Health Organization recommends that the coverage should not be less than 95%.

“Vaccination against measles starts at 12 months of age, but we have cases of illness in children aged 8-9 months, which is worrying. When we have a large number of cases, those who have not reached the vaccination age are also at risk. Some countries resorted to vaccination from the age of 9 months. We see an epidemic in Romania, Ukraine, but also in other countries, which means that the risk persists in the Republic of Moldova as well. In the Republic of Moldova, the vaccination rate at present decreased compared to the pre-pandemic period, when we had a vaccination rate of 95%. Today the vaccination rate is over 85% and the risk is very high. In 2002, Moldova recorded 5,000 measles cases and 7,000 rubella cases. The more cases we register, the more serious are the forms, with many complications, and the risk of death is very high,” noted Angela Paraschiv.

At the beginning of 2024, Moldova reported the first case of measles in an 8-year-old child from Orhei. In 2021 and 2022, no measles cases were recorded, while in 2023, there were confirmed three cases.

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