The nine children who recently died of unknown disease in Sitakunda of Chittagong were suffering from measles, says the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR), reports UNB.
"The children died at Tripurapara of Sitakunda after they were affected from measles virus...but the virus won't spread further," director general of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) Prof Dr Abul Kalam Azad told a press conference at IEDCR auditorium.
He said a five-member rapid response team of IEDCR, led by its chief scientific officer, immediately visited Tripurapara after the disease broke out and collected various data from the field. It also visited two hospitals and collected samples of patients' blood and throat swab and immediately sent to the IEDCR.
Azad said the samples were tested at the laboratories of IEDCR and Public Health Institute and identified measles virus.
"After examining the symptoms of the patients and laboratory test of the samples, we confirmed that the children of Tripurapara were affected from measles virus. As the children suffered from malnutrition, the virus spread from one's body to another quickly," he said.
The director general said the children of about 85 ethnic communities of Tripurara were not brought under the coverage of immunisation since they kept themselves away from modern faculties due to their customs.
The lives of the children who died being affected from measles virus could have been saved if they had been brought to hospital in time for treatment.
Azad said every ward of the country will be brought under the micro plan of immunisation programme to avoid further from measles virus breakout in the country.
He said about 13 percent children of the country are still not getting measles vaccine, asking guardians to provide double doses of measles vaccine to save their children from measles virus.
Senior officials of IEDCR and World Health Organisation (WHO) were present at the press conference.