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August 24, 2010

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Free measles vaccines for children

UNDER a national campaign to control the spread of measles, the city will provide free vaccine for all children aged between eight months and 14 years on September 11-20, the Shanghai Health Bureau said yesterday.

Children at schools and some kindergartens will get the measles shots at their educational facilities, including students at international schools. Infants at home and the remaining kindergartens can receive the jabs at community hospitals. Expatriate children who don't go to kindergartens or schools can call 12320 - the city's bilingual public health hotline.

"Nearly 2 million children are expected to be covered by the campaign," Song Guofan, an official with the health bureau, said yesterday.

Measles vaccination has been included in the nation's free inoculation program and most local children have received the injection. Health officials said the citywide campaign is to ensure that all children are covered and therefore protected.

"It is safe for children who have already been inoculated to get a repeat shot," Song said.

Measles is a highly contagious infectious disease of the respiratory system. It is spread through contact with fluids from an infected person's nose and mouth. Children are the major victims.


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