America is in danger of losing its “measles-free” status
September 11, 2019 9:25 AM Subscribe
If an outbreak in New York state continues, the US will no longer be considered a nation that eliminated measles. Too many people have forgotten how serious measles is, and they’re opting out of vaccines. Because of that, we all have to worry about measles again. At the beginning of September, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded more than 1,200 measles cases in the US. That’s the largest number for any year since 1992. It’s also a huge uptick compared to 2018, when 372 cases were reported. As a result, on October 2, the US could lose its measles-elimination status. That status is conferred on countries without continuous measles transmission for at least one year, where all measles cases can be linked back to a traveler who brought the virus from another place where it’s been circulating. If an outbreak in New York state marks its one-year anniversary at the beginning of October, our elimination status will go with it.
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