India received the ‘Measles and Rubella Champion’ Award

India received the ‘Measles and Rubella Champion’ Award


India received the ‘Measles and Rubella Champion’ Award for Exemplary Efforts in Measles and Rubella Disease Prevention from Measles and Rubella Partnership at the American Red Cross Headquarters in Washington D.C., USA.

  • Earlier in 2019, India had set target to eliminate Measles and Rubella (MR) by 2023.


GS-02 (Health)

India’s campaign against measles and rubella:

  • It is to celebrate India’s commitment to public health and its commendable leadership in curbing the spread of these infectious diseases among children.
  • It further recognizes India for providing regional leadership to the measles & rubella elimination programme by using ‘measles as a tracer’ to strengthen routine immunization under the country’s Universal Immunization Programme (UIP).
  • Despite facing numerous challenges, India has demonstrated remarkable progress in reducing measles and rubella cases and preventing outbreaks through a series of comprehensive interventions.


  • A highly contagious viral disease which is a major cause of death among young children globally.
  • It is caused by a single-stranded, enveloped RNA virus with 1 serotype.
  • It is classified as a member of the genus Morbillivirus in the Paramyxoviridae family.
  • It primarily attacks malnourished children and those with reduced immunity.
  • It can cause serious complications like blindness, encephalitis, severe diarrhoea, ear infection and pneumonia.


  • Also known as German Measles, Rubella is a contagious viral infection typically mild in nature and commonly affecting children and young adults.
  • It is caused by the rubella virus, an enveloped single-stranded RNA virus.
  • Rubella infection during pregnancy poses risks of death or congenital defects, leading to irreversible birth defects known as Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS).
  • While sharing similar signs and symptoms with measles, rubella is caused by a different virus and is less contagious and severe than measles.

Measures to curb Measles and Rubella:

  • The Measles-Rubella (MR) vaccination campaign is targeting approximately 41 crore children nationwide, marking the largest campaign of its kind.
  • All children aged between 9 months and less than 15 years receive a single dose of MR vaccination, regardless of their previous vaccination status or disease history for measles or rubella.
  • Additional initiatives include the Universal Immunization Programme (UIP), Mission Indradhanush, and Intensified Mission Indradhanush, aimed at expanding immunization coverage.
  • Vaccines for these diseases are provided in various combinations, including measles-rubella (MR), measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), or measles-mumps-rubella-varicella (MMRV), to enhance efficacy and coverage.