'Measles in Europe up 400% in 2017'

HSE Measles clinic for city

Last year, 86 people were diagnosed with measles in the US and so far this year 9 cases have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A total of 21,315 measles cases were recorded in 2017 in Europe, compared to 5,273 cases the year before, the World Health Organization office said in a report released on February 19.

Measles cases across Europe increased by 400% in 2017 with more than 20,000 people affected and 35 deaths. The worst affected country was Romania, with 5,562 cases.

It says more than 20 million people were infected with measles in 2016.

To prevent an outbreak, 95 per cent of the population should be immunised.

There was a meeting to talk about how to increase vaccination rate in Europe. The most vulnerable victims of the disease include unvaccinated young children and pregnant women, according to WHO. The CDC has furnished travel advisories across Europe, prompting Americans to ascertain that they are up to date on measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine. His controversial views have since been widely discredited.

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Romania and Italy reported the most cases with 5,562 and 5,006 cases respectively. By the end of 2016, it was reported that 42 countries out of the 53 included in the region had interrupted endemic measles transmissions, however, it is recognised that outbreaks will continue until every susceptible child and adult has been protected.

Dr Mary Ramsay, head of immunisation at Public Health England, added: 'Due to ongoing measles outbreaks within Europe, we will continue to see imported measles cases in the United Kingdom in unimmunised individuals. This is given twice - at 12 months of age and again at four-to-five years - as part of the routine immunisation programme.

"Elimination of both measles and rubella is a priority goal that all European countries have firmly committed to, and a cornerstone for achieving the health-related sustainable development goals".

Dr Will Welfare, a consultant in health protection at Public Health England, told Manchester Evening News: 'Measles is a very infectious virus and can spread rapidly among communities, such as schools, if people have not been fully immunised.

The spokesperson said: "If people are unsure of their vaccination status they are advised to get an MMR vaccine, as even if they do have 2 doses of MMR a third dose is not harmful".

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