Medicine

USA measles cases hit highest level since eradication in 2000

USA measles cases hit highest level since eradication in 2000

On the same day the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed measles cases are at their highest since the virus was declared eliminated in 2000, UNICEF announced that 21.1 million children had missed their first dose of the measles vaccine every year over the last eight years.

On Thursday, the CDC also confirmed some 695 measles cases have been identified across 22 USA states, mainly concentrated in one outbreak in Washington State and two in New York State.

WESTLAKE, Ohio- In just a matter of weeks the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates the USA will hit a new record of measles cases. That's more than the 667 cases reported in 2014, when one large outbreak primarily among unvaccinated people in Amish communities in OH accounted for more than half of the cases that year.

New York City health officials on Wednesday reported 61 new cases since late last week.

The number of cases is likely to go even higher.

Confirmed cases have been found in rizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington.

Two doses of the measles vaccine are essential to protect children from the disease.

Measles is highly contagious and can be spread through coughing or sneezing, or touching things that an infected person has coughed or sneezed on.

Roughly three-quarters of this year's illnesses in the USA have been in NY state, mainly in two ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities in Brooklyn and suburban Rockland County.

More news: CDC: Depending on age, you may need booster for protection from measles

"The measles virus will always find unvaccinated children", said Fore.

The Ministry of Health recently highlighted that since 2012, all cases of measles in New Zealand came from travellers bringing the disease from overseas and that there are now significant measles outbreaks in many countries.

Globally, 85% of children received their first dose in 2017 and 67% got the second dose.

Mary Ramsay, Public Health England's head of immunisations, said: "The UK achieved WHO measles elimination status in 2017, so the overall risk of measles to the UK population is low".

According to the CDC, there are no OH cases of the measles reported, yet Heffron says it likely won't remain that way for long.

"These cases are stark reminders of why New Yorkers must get vaccinated against the measles as soon as possible", New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot said.

In Madagascar 700 people have died of measles since September, many of them children.

One such community is in NY where there is a lot of misinformation about the measles/mumps/rubella vaccine. They attributes these numbers to a lack of access to the drug, poor health care systems, complacency and the anti-vaccine movement.

An upsurge in anti-vaccine messages on social media has been blamed for promoting scepticism among parents, but Public Health England says that the bigger problem in this country is difficulty in getting a GP appointment to have the jabs.


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