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Canada could see large amount of measles outbreaks, health experts warn

08 February 2019

The number of people contracting measles in 2018 across Europe was the highest number for a decade, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.

Kate Brown is urging residents to get vaccinated as public health officials in OR and Washington report a combined 55 confirmed cases of measles. In Madagascar, officials say more than 50,000 people have been infected with measles in recent months and more than 300 people, mostly children, have died as a result. In a statement, Jay Inslee-Washington's Governor-stated that measles is an extremely contagious transferable disease that can be deadly in small children.

"I think we need to strengthen our legislation", she told reporters. A majority of those came from Clark County, home to Vancouver, where 51 cases have been confirmed since January 1.

The European Vaccine Action Plan 2015-2020 (EVAP) lays out a strategy endorsed by all 53 Member States to eliminate both measles and rubella. Thirteen additional cases were suspected.

"During an outbreak is when you see an influx of patients who would otherwise be vaccine-hesitant", said Virginia Ramos, infection control nurse with Sea Mar Community Health Center, which runs six sites that offer vaccines in Clark County.

The Vancouver Clinic, which operates medical offices and urgent care centers in the area, reported that shots administered jumped from 263 in January 2018 to 1,444 last month, a almost 450 percent increase. Between January 13 and February 2, 2,739 children and 1,754 adults were vaccinated compared to 630 children and 60 adults over the same period a year ago. Coverage with the first dose of the vaccine also increased slightly to 95%, the highest level since 2013. No other information is being released to protect the person's identity.

What Other Cities Are at Risk?

Last year, 372 measles cases were confirmed nationwide, the most since an outbreak in 2014 sickened 667 people.

Looking Ahead Where will the next big measles outbreak spring up in the United States?

Part of the challenge facing public health officials is that Canada doesn't have a national vaccination registry and provinces track vaccine rates differently, meaning it can be hard to get an accurate, real-time sense of how many people are up-to-date on their shots - and where pockets of low immunization are.

Adult vaccination numbers in the county also rose. Texas, which allows philosophical and religious vaccine exemptions, has 6 confirmed measles cases in 2019, 3 of which have been confirmed in Harris County.

"There's no reason we should be having this outbreak", says Melnick.

Canada could see large amount of measles outbreaks, health experts warn