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Progress Stalled On Measles Elimination, WHO Data Show

Media sources report on a WHO report showing 2015 targets for measles will not be met without stepped up efforts.

The Guardian: Measles eradication plans have stalled, says WHO
“Progress against the elimination of measles has stalled, the World Health Organization is warning. The number of deaths from the viral disease actually rose in the last year — from an estimated 122,000 in 2012 to 145,700 in 2013…” (Boseley, 11/13).

LiveMint: 6.4 million newborns do not get measles vaccine every year: WHO
“Although measles can be prevented through vaccination, nearly 6.4 million newborns are still not being immunized annually and the progress to eradicate the disease has stalled globally in the past one year, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned in a report on Thursday…” (Krishnan, 11/14).

Reuters: Progress on eliminating measles has stalled, WHO warns
“…More than 145,000 people died of measles in 2013, up from 122,000 in 2012, the WHO said. Epidemics in China, Congo, and Nigeria contributed to this, but there were also outbreaks in the WHO’s European region, including in Georgia, Turkey, and Ukraine…” (Kelland, 11/13).

U.N. News Centre: U.N. health agency sees ‘alarming trend’ as efforts lag in eliminating measles
“…In developing countries, it costs around $1 to vaccinate a child against the disease, making the measles vaccine one of the best buys in public health. During 2013, 205 million children were immunized against measles through large-scale campaigns in 34 countries, including Cambodia, Cape Verde, Ghana, Jordan, Senegal, and Sudan…” (11/13).

VOA News: Global Campaign to Eliminate Measles Stalls
“The U.N. agency says measles immunization efforts are hampered by lack of money, weak health systems, and not enough awareness of the importance of vaccinating children against this killer disease…” (Schlein, 11/13).

WHO: WHO warns that progress towards eliminating measles has stalled
“…Barriers that are hampering immunization efforts will need to be addressed, including diminishing funding and the need to strengthen health systems. WHO strongly recommends that every child receives two doses of measles vaccine and that countries unable to reach high coverage through routine immunization services continue follow-up vaccination campaigns every two to four years to eliminate the risk of resurgence…” (11/13).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.