China to strive to eliminate measles within 5 years: health minister

19:31, January 06, 2011      

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China's Health Minister Chen Zhu said Thursday the country is striving to eliminate measles over the next five years, as figures show the incidence of the disease in China in 2010 dropped 25.8 percent.

"The prevention and control systems for major diseases will be improved in the 12th Five-Year Program (2011-2015) to basically control malaria and eliminate measles," said Chen at a national meeting on health work.

Some 102 million people across China received measles vaccinations in 2010, ministry figures show.

The central government allocated more than 150 million yuan (22.6 million U.S. dollars) in September last year to inoculate children aged 8 months to 4 years against measles.

"The move is an all-out effort to enhance citizens' immunity to measles and to stop the spread of the disease," he said.

Chen said China also intensified efforts last year to prevent other major communicable diseases including AIDS, tuberculosis, schistosomiasis and hepatitis B.

More than 29 million children aged under 15 were vaccinated against hepatitis B free of charge last year, when reported cases of 15 communicable diseases, including diphtheria, dropped remarkably.

Source: Xinhua
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