An uncontrolled measles outbreak is taking its toll on Pakistan. A report released last month stated that less than four months into the new year, there have already been 25,401 reported cases of measles in Pakistan, and 146 children have already died as a result of this disease.

This uncontrolled measles outbreak may soon lead to an international travel ban in Pakistan.

Dr. Sania Nishtar, Pakistan’s Minister for Information and Technology, Education and Trainings, and Science and Technology, said that this was the second time a measles outbreak could not be prevented in Pakistan. She warned that this could lead to international isolation and a potential international travel ban.

In 2012, there were over 7,000 laboratory confirmed cases of measles in Pakistan. Of those cases, tests show that 60 percent of the children had never received a single dose of measles vaccine, while another 20 percent had been given only a single dose.

Dr. Qamarul Hasan, the World Health Organization’s (WHO) focal person on the measles outbreak in Pakistan said that Pakistan is one of the top five countries in the world having the highest number of unvaccinated children.

When planning to travel abroad, always stay informed about potential health alerts in your destination.  The US Department of State provides country specific information on Travel.State.Gov with requirements for entry, health and medical conditions, and more.

If international travel plans to Pakistan are on your agenda this year, be aware that both a valid US passport as well as a valid Pakistani visa is required for entry into Pakistan by US citizens.  Additional information for obtaining a Pakistani visa can be found on the Embassy of Pakistan’s website or by contacting one of the locations below.

Embassy of Pakistan in Washington DC

www.embassyofpakistanusa.org
Consular Office Washington DC
3517 International Court NW
Washington, DC 20008.
(202)243-6500
info@embassyofpakistanusa.org

New York Consulate

www.pakistanconsulateny.org
Consulate General of Pakistan
12 East, 65th Street
New York, NY  10065
212-879-5800
info@pakistanconsulateny.org

Los Angeles Consulate

www.pakconsulatela.org
Consulate General of Pakistan
10850 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 1250
Los Angeles, CA 90024.
310-441-5114

Chicago Consulate

www.cgpkchicago.org
Consulate General of Pakistan
333 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 728
Chicago, IL  60601
312-781-1831
info@cgpkchicago.org

Houston Consulate

www.pakistanconsulatehouston.org/
Consulate General of Pakistan
11850 Jones Road
Houston, TX  77070
281-894-6605
parephouston@sbcglobal.net

Alternately, you can get your Pakistani travel visa online at RushMyTravelVisa.com.  While no international travel ban has been issued yet, this measles outbreak in Pakistan is a potential health risk that you should know about before traveling to the country.