Samoa Measles Epidemic Claims 2 More Lives

No wailing this time...parents just have blank looks on their faces.

Parents seem to have run out of tears. Just blank looks on their faces.

Sunday 24th November 2019, 3pm Apia Samoa. Two more babies have lost their battle with measles at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole (TTM) Hospital at Motootua in the past 8 hours taking the death toll to at least 24.

There are also unconfirmed reports of another 2 deaths including one in Savaii, which could take Samoa’s death toll from 20 to 26 in just 48 hours.

The two babies were being treated at the TTM hospital’s Intesive Care Unit and they passed away within 6 hours of each other.

A health care worker who spoke to Samoa Global News on condition of not being named says the mood is sombre as parents take in the shock of losing their babies.

Two babies die within 6 hours.

“No waling this time. Just blank looks on people’s faces.”

“Parents just look like they have no more tears to cry.”

Another health care worker added that, “most of the deaths are being presented late to the hospital.”

“No definite reasons why but it could possibly be due to the late recognition of signs and symptoms, or late presentation due to seeking traditional healing..”

Summary of cases and deaths as of 7pm Saturday 23 Nov 2019.

The death toll according to Press Release No.7 issued at 7pm Saturday night had the number of deaths at 22 with 21 of them being under the age of 4.

Of that 21, five deaths have been babies 0-5 months old and five deaths have been 6-11 month old babies.

Today, Sunday 24th of November, the measles epidemic takes two more young lives taking Samoa’s climbing death toll to 24.

Medical Assistance Teams from Australia and New Zealand have arrived into Samoa to offer a helping hand to the Samoa health care providers.

Sina Retzlaff