Paraguay confirms its first measles case in 25 years


The Ministry of Health of Paraguay has confirmed this Friday a case of measles in the city of Hohenau, a disease that had not been present in the country since 1998, 25 years ago.

After Paraguayan health authorities registered several suspected measles cases, more than 40 samples were sent to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to confirm or rule out the disease. After that, one of the samples has tested positive, as reported by the Health portfolio itself.

The Health Surveillance Directorate (DVS) has confirmed that the case of measles occurred in September in a child under one year of age who received the measles vaccine and experienced symptoms of the disease, the Noticias Paraguay portal has reported.

“We are talking about an outbreak of a case of a disease that is very contagious, probably the most contagious that we know of in medicine, and that we have not seen a spread, perhaps due to vaccination coverage,” said the director of the DVS William Sequera.

In this sense, Sequera has warned of the possibility that diseases begin to emerge that “have not been seen for 20 or 30 years” if “the corresponding measures” are not taken, according to the aforementioned media.

The Paraguayan Ministry of Health has urged parents and guardians to complete the regular vaccination scheme for children, in order to protect them from dangerous and contagious diseases such as measles. Also, it has recommended travelers to be immunized against this disease.

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Measles is caused by a virus from the paramyxovirus family and is usually transmitted through direct contact and through the air, according to the World Health Organization (WHO) through its website. Thus, he stresses that “measles is a very contagious and serious disease” and stresses that “before the vaccine was introduced in 1963 and its use became widespread, every 2 or 3 years there were major measles epidemics that caused nearly two million deaths a year.

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