Measles epidemic on track to be the worst in almost 20 years

Measles outbreak prompts State Senate Dems to target anti-vaxxers with ad campaign

Measles cases 'likely' to break yearly record in just 4 months

The U.S. has reported a growing number of measles cases this year, with more than 600 reported incidents. This includes illnesses reported by state health departments to the CDC through April 19 and therefore does not include cases reported since then.

On the island of Madagascar between September 2018 and February 2019 there were more than 67,000 cases of measles reported, including 828 deaths.

It can be spread through a simple cough or sneeze. It can be serious with about one in ten people with measles needing hospital treatment.

According to World Health Organization, measles outbreaks are now happening in Madagascar, Sudan, Thailand, Philippines, Ukraine, Myanmar, Ethiopia, and more. As part of the national mission to eliminate measles-rubella by 2020, the BMC had started a drive to immunise 29 lakh children. Up to 20-30 percent of infected people have complications from the disease. There are no anti-viral drugs for treating measles. Florida's second reported measles case in 2019 is in addition to the measles case in Broward County reported in March - and adds to the total number of measles cases in the United States escalating weekly.

That declaration meant that the virus was no longer present year-round.

According to the CDC, the worst post-2000 measles outbreak was recorded in Amish communities in OH, affecting 383 people. Even if your family does not travel internationally, you could come into contact with measles anywhere in your community.

Due to declines in measles vaccinations in recent years, there have been outbreaks of the disease all over the world, and medical experts say it could rebound in full force if not addressed.

If you were not at any of these locations during the above dates and times, you are not considered at risk for this measles exposure.

Receiving both recommended doses of the MMR vaccine is 97 percent effective in preventing the measles, according to the CDC. "I would think that we will see less cases and outbreaks of measles in states that eliminate nonmedical vaccine exemptions".

"The first of two routine childhood measles vaccine doses is given at 12-15 months of age". Cases increased 300-percent globally in the first three months of 2019 compared to the same period of time past year.

Anyone born after January 15, 1957, who has not had at least one dose of measles vaccine after 12 months of age or who has not had the measles should be immunized.

For people who live in the ZIP codes affected by the outbreak, babies 6 months to 11 months old should get an early dose of the MMR vaccine, to be followed by the two-dose recommendation. "Only now, especially with the anti-vaccine movement, has it become a problem", said Dr. Dana Hawkinson, an infectious disease physician with the University of Kansas Health System.

The FDA approved the vaccine almost 50 years ago.

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