Bio-cultural medium, vaccines and prevention of measles (India)
Measles is still one of the main causes of infant death, despite the fact that 85% of the boys and girls in the world have been vaccinated. Half these deaths occur in India.
India has started a massive vaccination campaign against measles with the aim of covering all regions, settlements and families door by door, as was done to eradicate polio. However, the difficulties are greater because, unlike immunisation against polio, the measles vaccine must be injected and requires two home visits in successive years to ensure the required doses, which means mobilising around 2.3 vaccinators.
For the 8,000 dongria kondhs who live in small, scattered settlements in the State of Odhisa (Orissa) there is no specific information about the incidence of and vaccination against measles. Orissa is not at the top of the ranking for measles morbidity, but local and ethnic data is needed about the real situation, which is generally worse in rural settlements. In India, for example, 33% of rural births are not registered, and even in the cities, 17% of newborns go unregistered.
75% of deaths from measles accumulate in Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Nigeria and Pakistan, all of them poor countries with huge populations, which make the efficiency of the campaigns difficult.