In settings where health systems have broken down, it can be difficult to monitor outbreaks of disease, such as measles, malaria, meningitis or Ebola. As a result, the ability to identify the threat of an epidemic can be severely limited.

Médecins Sans Frontières plays an important role in epidemic response. Our teams focus on outbreak prevention through vaccination campaigns, early diagnosis and community health promotion. They also provide treatment to patients in healthcare centres and travel to remote areas to reach isolated communities where disease can spread quickly if left undetected.

In Europe, measles is considered a minor illness, but people forget that it's still one of the main causes of child deaths worldwide. It's a highly contagious infection, and its effects can be very serious, especially in children who are already weakened by other diseases, such as malaria or malnutrition.

Doctor Marion Osterberger

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