Status of Rubella and Measles in India

Status of Rubella and Measles in India

Status of Rubella and Measles in India

This article covers “Daily current affairs for UPSC “and the topic is about ‘rubella and measles’ which is in the news, it covers “Science and technology and Health” In GS-2, and GS-3, the following content has relevance for UPSC. 

For Prelims: About Rubella and measles

For Mains: GS-2, GS-3 ,Health and science and technology

Why in the news:

India declared a goal to eradicate measles and rubella (MR) by 2023 after missing the previous deadline of 2020 for several reasons, some of which were made worse by the pandemic’s interruptions.

India set the goal of eradicating MR by 2023 in anticipation that the 2020 target would not be feasible.

About Rubella and measles


  • It is a viral disease that is extremely contagious and kills young children all over the world.
  • A single-stranded, encapsulated RNA virus with one serotype is the culprit. It is categorized as a member of the family Paramyxoviridae’s genus Morbillivirus.
  • Since it targets children who are malnourished and have weakened immune systems, it is especially harmful to youngsters from disadvantaged economic backgrounds.
  • Blindness, encephalitis, severe diarrhea, ear infections, and pneumonia are just a few of the terrible problems it can bring on.
  • A safe and effective vaccination is currently available, but measles still claims the lives of thousands of youngsters each year throughout the world.
  • Young children make up the majority of the fatalities.
  • The paramyxovirus family includes the measles virus, which is often spread through direct contact with the air.
  • Measles mortality decreased by almost 73% between 2000 and 2018 thanks to intensive vaccination campaigns conducted worldwide.
  • Measles symptoms often start 10 to 12 days after the infection. The typical signs include:
    • high fever
    • clogged nose
    • red eyes
    • Little white dots on the mouth’s interior
    • Rashes that extend downward from the face and upper neck (this appears after several days)

Vaccine for measles

  • This vaccination, known as the MMR, protects against measles, mumps, and rubella.
  • MMR is administered twice, once at 12 to 15 months and once around 4 to 6 years of age.
  • Teenagers and adults can receive the MMR vaccine as needed.


  • It is also known as German Measles or Rubella.
  • Rubella is a contagious, mostly minor viral infection that primarily affects children and adolescents.
  • The single-stranded RNA virus with an envelope that causes it is called the rubella virus.
  • Pregnant women who contract rubella may lose their lives or give birth to children who have Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS), an untreatable birth condition.
  • Although rubella is distinct from measles, the two diseases have significant similarities, such as the red rash.
  • Rubella is not as contagious or dangerous as measles since it is caused by a different virus.

The situation of Measles and Rubella in the World and in India

  • According to the World Health Organization, rubella is a major vaccine-preventable cause of birth abnormalities and the measles virus is one of the most contagious human viruses in the world, killing more than 100,000 children annually (WHO).
  • According to figures from the WHO, during the past 20 years, the measles vaccination is thought to have prevented more than 30 million deaths worldwide.
  • India vaccinated around 119 million children in 14 States between 2010 and 2013 as part of a phased measles catch-up immunization program for children aged 9 months to 10 years.
  • In 2014, Mission Indradhanush was established to increase vaccination rates among the unvaccinated.
  • India developed a national strategic plan for the eradication of measles and rubella from 2017 to 2021.
  • The government added the rubella-containing vaccine (RCV) to the regular immunization schedule during this time.
  • As of December 2021, Bhutan, DPR Korea, the Maldives, Sri Lanka, and Timor-Leste have all been confirmed as having eliminated measles. Maldives and Sri Lanka have also maintained their status as countries that eradicated rubella in 2021.

What are the MR Prevention Measures:

Government programs:

vaccination for measles and rubella

  • The MR Immunization Program was introduced in 2017 by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
  • The largest-ever effort, the MR campaign targets about 41 crore youngsters nationwide.
  • No matter whether they have ever received the measles/rubella vaccination or have ever had the disease, all children between the ages of 9 months and under 15 receive a single dose of the MR vaccine.
  • All fifty states offer the MR vaccination free of charge.
  • UIP, Mission Indradhanush, and Intensified Mission Indradhanush are some
  • further initiatives.
  • The MR campaign, the largest ever in any campaign, aims to reach around 41 crore youngsters nationwide.
  • Measle-rubella (MR), measle-mumps-rubella (MMR), and measle-mumps-rubella-varicella (MMRV) combination vaccines are available to prevent infections.


The Hindu

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Plutus IAS current affairs eng med 25th Jan 2023

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