The nation of Samoa has ended its six-week long state of emergency in response to a measles outbreak that infected over 5,000 people.
Despite vaccination rates being fairly high at 90 percent in 2013, last year they had plummeted to just 30 percent. Samoa’s government swung into action when the emergency was declared, making measles vaccinations mandatory for everyone. Within a week of the emergency being declared, about a quarter of the island’s entire population had been vaccinated. On December 5, three-quarters had received the vaccine.
Now, Samoa’s Ministry for Health has announced that 95 percent of the population has been immunized, meaning that herd immunity has been achieved and the virus will no longer be able to pass rapidly from person to person.