On 18th July 2016, a rumor of measles outbreak was reported in Gbonota Clinic within the Kporlormu catchment community in Sanoyea District. Upon receipt of the rumor, a team comprised of the district health team, Gbonota Clinic’s Officer in Charge, vaccination technicians, Sanoyea’s District Surveillance Officer, and Dr. Peter Adewuyi (Field Coordinator of Liberia’s Frontline Field Epidemiology Training Program) visited the scene for verification on the 20th of July, 2016, to establish the existence and severity of the measles outbreak in the community to put in place measures that would interrupt transmission.
The team walked for 90 minutes to get to the village where cases were reported.
The team line listed 22 cases with two deaths. All the cases presented with fever, rashes, cough, red eyes, and loss of appetite. Nine blood samples were collected for testing of which 6 were measles IgM positive. Males accounted for 13 (59%) of cases. Although records showed full immunization coverage, 15 (68%) of the cases were not vaccinated.
The cases’ ages range between 6 months to 6 years (Median 6 years). The index case was identified as a 20-year-old male who came from Phebe Hospital where he was admitted for different condition. He then returned to Kporlormu Village with rashes, fever, red eyes and cough.
The attack rate was 18 cases in every 100 population (community residences), and the case fatality rate from the measles outbreak was 9.1 %.
Cases were isolated and treated with vitamin A, Calamine lotion and Tetracycline eye ointment. Immunization was carried out in the community and its surrounding villages. Team informed the surveillance officers to make a follow up investigation at Phebe Hospital. It was recommended to the EPI program to reconsider the age for vaccination based on the age range of the cases. The last case was identified on 17th August, 2016. Active case search is still ongoing.