• As of 30 December, four Pacific Islands Countries and Areas (PICs) have announced measles outbreaks: American Samoa, Fiji, Samoa and Tonga. The number of cases is decreasing in Samoa, and the situation has stabilised in American Samoa, Fiji, and Tonga.
• Kiribati has two laboratory confirmed cases of measles, no epidemiological link has been identified during investigation.
• A suspected measles case in Niue has been found to be laboratory negative; i.e. no case of measles.
• The situation in other PICs is being closely monitored with on-site and remote preparedness support from WHO, UNICEF and other partners.
Summary by PIC
• American Samoa: No new measles case reported since the last report.
• Fiji: one new case is under investigation to assess links to the current outbreak.
• Kiribati: two laboratory confirmed cases, but no epidemiological link identified. One suspected case under further investigation.
• Niue: one suspected measles case in Niue has been verified as negative.
• Samoa: situation is stabilizing, with a decrease in the numbers of reported cases. The Measles State of Emergency ended on 28 December 2019.
• Tonga: outbreak is slowing, with fewer numbers reported, mostly from the main island of Tongatapu.
▪ WHO will begin rolling out a collaborative methodology to work alongside Pacific Ministries of Health to identify and prioritise key measles preparedness and response actions for the next 3-6 months.
▪ Availability of vaccines is currently monitored by WHO and UNICEF (Table 3) and contingency plan is in place in case of additional demand.
Other emergency activities in the region
• Tropical Cyclone Sarai has affected Fiji and Tonga.
• In Fiji, over 2,000 people were evacuated in 48 evacuation centres.
• The Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical services has put measles surveillance in place and offered vaccination.
• Other coinciding events:
▪ There are ongoing dengue outbreaks in the Kosrae and Yap States in FSM and Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI).
▪ Influenza outbreak reported in Republic of the Marshal Islands
▪ Acute Diarrhoea and vomiting (ADV)/Rotavirus RDT-positive cases reported in Kiribati. One death due to ADV has been reported and is under investigation.