Published: Thu, February 22, 2018
Medicine | By Daryl Nelson

Romanian Measles Epidemic Worst in Europe

Romanian Measles Epidemic Worst in Europe

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. Italy also experienced a severe outbreak with 5,006 cases in 2017 compared to 843 the year before.

As for the number of people who are not lucky enough to get measles in Europe, the figure is 21 315 people.

"Over 20,000 cases of measles, and 35 lives lost in 2017 alone, are a tragedy we simply can not accept", commented Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO regional director for Europe. "Over 20 000 cases of measles, and 35 lives lost in 2017 alone, are a tragedy we simply can not accept", says Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe.

Europe has been struggling to control measles for years.

Measles, a highly contagious disease was exemplified in 2017 by the red rash all through the body affecting 21,315 people and killed 35 victims and in 2016, just 5,273 cases were recorded, while 9 people detected with the disease since during 1 to 27 January in 2018 from 4 states including Illinois, Arkansas, Texas and in, says the report.

People who remain unvaccinated contribute to measles rates not only by exposing themselves but also by exposing others.

That's what is happening in Europe, as well.

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She said the best protection against measles is to be fully vaccinated with two doses of the measles, mumps and rubell (MMR) vaccine.

But social media has helped spread incorrect information about vaccine effectiveness and safety.

Every un-immunised person, regardless of their age, is at risk of contracting the disease, especially in countries with low immunisation rates. Vaccination rates in Romania declined nearly 20 percentage points in the last decade, from 96 percent in 2006 to 76 percent in 2016. Romania had the most, with 5,562, followed by Italy, with 5,006, and Ukraine, with 4,767.

In Europe, 21,000 cases of the illness were reported, with 5,000 in Romania, Italy and Ukraine.

"A lot of people have forgotten the dangers of measles and look at it as even a benign condition", he said, adding that the outbreak of cases in Limerick could be due to close proximity or possibly to a pocket in which vaccination levels fell short at some stage.

"This is increasing the percentage of those who became suddenly anti-vaccination or at least hesitant".

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