By Ahura Mujuni Mark
The ministry of Health has sent a team of experts to handle the outbreak of measles in Hoima district .The disease has so far claimed three lives since it was announced a week ago.
The health ministry’s permanent secretary, Dr Asuman Lukwago says the team will brief health officials on how to handle the disease and also conduct an immunization exercise.
Lukwago has warned parents who shun the immunisation exercise saying they subject their children to contracting diseases.
Measles is an infection of the respiratory system caused by a virus, specifically a paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus. Morbilliviruses, like other paramyxoviruses, are enveloped, single-stranded, negative-sense RNA viruses. Symptoms include fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes and a generalized, maculopapular, erythematous rash.
Measles is spread through respiration (contact with fluids from an infected person’s nose and mouth, either directly or through aerosol transmission), and is highly contagious—90% of people without immunity sharing living space with an infected person will catch it.
An asymptomatic incubation period occurs nine to twelve days from initial exposure and infectivity lasts from two to four days prior, until two to five days following the onset of the rash (i.e. four to nine days infectivity in total).