For a Measle-y $1 A Child Can Be Vaccinated Against Measles for Life

San Diego, February 18, 2010 – On Saturday, February 20, 2010, the San Diego/Imperial Counties Chapter of the American Red Cross, in partnership with Latte Mi Corazon, will host a benefit to raise funds for the Measles Initiative.

Established in 2001, the Measles Initiative – a partnership led by the American Red Cross, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the United Nations Foundation, UNICEF and the World Health Organization – aims to reduce global measles mortality through mass vaccination campaigns and by strengthening routine immunization.

Measles is a highly contagious virus, spread by contact with an infected person through coughing and sneezing.  When one person has measles, 90 percent of the people they come into close contact with will become infected, if they are not already immune. Being immune means someone has been vaccinated or has previously contracted the disease.  The symptoms include a high fever, severe skin rash and cough.  Before global health leaders formed the Measles Initiative in 2001, more than 750,000 children worldwide died from measles each year.

For less than US $1, a child can be safely and effectively vaccinated against measles, making it one of the most cost-effective health interventions available.

The Measles Initiative supports vaccination campaigns worldwide. More than 700 million children have received a measles vaccination as a result of the Initiative. Globally, deaths have decreased by 78 percent. The Measles Initiative goal is to reduce measles deaths worldwide by 90 percent between 2000 and 2010.

In total, strengthening routine immunization and conducting mass vaccination campaigns has prevented an estimated 4.3 million deaths.

The art reception will take place from 6pm to 9pm at Latte Mi Corazon located at 129 25th Street, San Diego, CA 92102.  Attendees will have an opportunity to meet the artist Chikle and view artwork by artist Emilia Garcia.

For more information, please contact Veronica Martinez at 858-309-1338.