Measles Not Back in Cambodia, Health Minister Says

Three weeks after the Health Ministry announced that measles had reappeared in Cambodia, a ministry official said Thursday that the highly contagious disease had in fact not been found.

A statement released jointly on October 8 by the ministry, the World Health Organization (WHO) and Unicef said that a case of measles had been confirmed in the country for the first time in nearly four years.

But Health Minister Mam Bunheng said that further testing conducted at a WHO laboratory had turned up negative for the measles virus.

“This case happened in Kratie province but after we sent the samples to test in Hong Kong, it was determined not to be measles,” Mr. Bunheng said.

In March, the WHO’s Regional Verification Commission for Measles declared that Cambodia had eliminated measles, having found no new cases since November 2011.

Mr. Bunheng added that a potential case of measles identified in Kompong Thom province had also tested negative. “For Kompong Thom, after we tested the child’s blood, it did not contain the measles virus,” he said.

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