31 Dec 2019

American Samoa to reopen schools following measles outbreak

3:53 pm on 31 December 2019

Schools in American Samoa are due to reopen next Monday after being shut since 6 December following the country's measles outbreak.

American Samoa is bracing itself for the possibility of a measles outbreak.

Photo: RNZ Pacific / Monica Miller

The Department of Health reports there have been no new confirmed measles cases in several weeks.

However, there are four suspected measles cases pending lab testing. That includes a two-year-old, who was admitted on Christmas Day.

Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga said all schools and daycare centres should re-open next Monday, but all other restrictions of the emergency public health declaration remained in place.

Health Director Motusa Tuileama Nua said the immunisation of unvaccinated children was the department's main goal this week.

Ninety-eight percent of children 12 months and older have received their first dose.

In the four years and older category, 90 percent have completed both doses, with the remainder still requiring the second shot.