Health Care

Number of 2019 measles cases surpasses total for 2018

Number of 2019 measles cases surpasses total for 2018”

A total of 387 individual cases have been confirmed with the disease in 15 states from January 1 to March 28 this year - that includes Missouri and IL.

The surge in measles cases has thrown a spotlight on the anti-vaccination movement.

The airborne disease is in large part seeing a resurgence due to the refusal of many parents to vaccinate their children, significantly within the Orthodox Jewish community. Measles are extremely contagious. There were 372 cases confirmed by this time in 2018.

Outbreaks - defined as three or more cases - are ongoing in California (Santa Cruz and Butte County), New Jersey, New York (Rockland County and New York City) and Washington, according to the CDC.

Since the MMR vaccine was introduced in 1963, cases and deaths from measles in the United States and other developed countries have plummeted, CNN reports. The highest number of reported cases since elimination was 667 in 2014.

In Switzerland, two doses of the measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccination are recommended for children: the first at nine months and the second at 12 months.

For most people, measles is miserable but not life-threatening.

In the USA, most outbreaks are sparked by travelers who picked up the virus in countries where measles is more common. The vaccine is 97% effective, according to the CDC. The county barred unvaccinated youths under 18 from public places for 30 days, although parks and outdoor areas are not included.

Typical measles symptoms, including high fever, rash all over the body, stuffy nose and reddened eyes, usually disappear without treatment within two or three weeks, though a severe case of the measles can lead to death. A very small number of those infected and can develop pneumonia, swelling of the brain or other serious symptoms.

The virus can be spread through the air or through contact with surfaces touched by those who are infected.

This year's numbers have been driven by outbreaks in several states, including Texas, New York, California, Illinois, and Washington.

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