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Article of the week: Measles in 2019 — Going Backward

19 Apr, 2019
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PERSPECTIVE By Catharine I. Paules, M.D.,  Hilary D. Marston, M.D., MP.H.,  and Anthony S. Fauci, M.D.

New England Journal of Medicine (published on April 17, 2019, at NEJM.org )

Measles vaccination has prevented an estimated 21 million deaths worldwide since 2000.3 Despite these substantial gains, global elimination goals have not been met, and previous strides are now being threatened by a 31% increase in the number of measles cases reported globally between 2016 and 2017.3

The resurgence in measles cases is all the more frustrating since the disease is entirely preventable through vaccination. Measles has all the components of an eradicable disease: there is a safe and highly effective vaccine, it has a readily diagnosable clinical syndrome, and it has no animal reservoir to maintain circulation.1 But because of the highly contagious nature of the virus, near-perfect vaccination coverage (herd immunity of 93 to 95%) is needed to effectively protect against a measles resurgence. Although there are valid reasons why some people might not be vaccinated, such as a medical contraindication due to marked immunosuppression, the failure to vaccinate too often stems from misconceptions about vaccine safety, especially those resulting from a now-debunked claim that posited a connection between the vaccine and autism. The growing anti-vaccination movement, based heavily on philosophical objections to vaccinations, poses a threat to public health. Vaccine hesitancy has been identified by the WHO as one of the top 10 threats to global health and is a serious hurdle to the global elimination and eradication of measles.

For full article click here 

 

This entry was posted on Friday, April 19th, 2019 at 12:24 pm and is filed under Blog.

Literature Literature archive

S Krishnaswamy, P Lambach, ML Giles 2019 HUMAN VACCINES & IMMUNOTHERAPEUTICS VOL. 15, NO. 4, 942–950
Editorial 2019 Lancet Adolescent Health Vol 3: 281
AHviid, JVinsløv Hansen, M Frisch,, et al 2019 Ann Intern Med 170(8):513-520.

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