Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:


Measles: Samoa declares emergency as cases continue to spike worldwide

BMJ 2019; 367 doi: (Published 29 November 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;367:l6767

Rapid Response:

Questions about measles in Samoa

In this BMJ report by Owen Dyer, it states that 3149 cases have been reported, and "so far 42 people have died from measles, almost all young children". So is this a death rate of around 13 per 1000 cases? Is that not extraordinary? But what do these figures mean anyway...? How were those 3149 cases verified? What is the vaccination and health background of the 42 people who are reported to have died? How many who were diagnosed with measles, and who died, were too young to be vaccinated and may have lacked measles antibodies from vaccinated mothers? And so many other questions...

Competing interests: No competing interests

02 December 2019
Elizabeth M Hart
Independent citizen investigating conflicts of interest in vaccination policy and the over-use of vaccine products
Adelaide, Australia