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Experts Are Voicing Concern Over The Increasing Frequency And Scale Of Measles Outbreaks Across The Globe As Worldwide Cases Nearly Doubled From 2022 To 2023

Tetiana - - illustrative purposes only, not the actual person

From many peoples’ perspectives, the world is only now returning “back to normal” following the disastrous COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, a familiar viral menace still seems to be making a comeback: measles.

Despite being on the brink of eradication due to widespread vaccination efforts, this highly contagious childhood illness is experiencing a concerning resurgence in multiple nations.

During the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases Global Congress held in Spain this year, scientists voiced concern over the escalating frequency and scale of measles outbreaks across the globe.

Dr. Patrick O’Connor, who represented the World Health Organization (WHO) headquarters in Switzerland, reported that, thus far in 2024, the cumulative count of measles cases documented is anticipated to reach or surpass the 321,582 provisional cases documented in 2023.

So, while reporting delays imply that the actual tally for 2024 is probably substantially higher than the 94,481 cases registered by early April, it’s evident that the trajectory is unfavorable. Even more concerning, the 321,582 cases of measles in 2023 nearly doubled the count from 2022, which stood at 171,153.

Close to 50% of the cases reported this year have emerged in the WHO European Region, where countries such as Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, and Yemen have recorded the highest incidence rates of measles worldwide.

This has worried researchers as the number of nations contending with large or disruptive outbreaks – which are defined as 20 cases per 1 million people sustained over 12 months – has tripled from 17 to 51 within just one year.

“Over the last decade, there has been significant progress towards measles and rubella elimination – the Regional Verification Commissions for Measles and Rubella Elimination (RVCs) from all of the WHO Regions will review all national measles and rubella 2023 reports in 2024,” Dr. O’Connor said.

“Large outbreaks and continuous transmissions of measles are always a concern and can make achieving and maintaining elimination challenging.”

Tetiana – – illustrative purposes only, not the actual person

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