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Infographic – Fastest Growing Measles Outbreaks

Countries with measles outbreaks

Click on image for full-size view (

2 Mar. 2019. Measles, a disease once considered by health authorities to be under control, is making a comeback in many places in the world, and Unicef on Thursday issued a report documenting the most serious outbreaks. Our friends at Statista compiled highlights from those data into a chart, our infographic for this weekend.

Unicef’s report shows 10 countries account for 74 percent of the increase in measles cases from 2017 to 2018. Ukraine has far and away the fastest-growing number of new cases with more than 30,000 reported last year. Philippines and Brazil follow with more than 13,000 and 10,000 new measles cases respectively. Statista quotes sources in the Ukrainian government noting more than 24,000 new measles cases are reported in that country so far in 2019. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports 6 separate outbreaks in the U.S., resulting from unvaccinated international travelers.

Measles is a highly contagious disease that spreads through coughing and sneezing, and with no specific treatment. Henrietta Fore, Unicef’s executive director, says in an agency statement, “We have a safe, effective and inexpensive vaccine against a highly contagious disease, a vaccine that has saved almost a million lives every year over the last two decades.” Fore adds, “These cases haven’t happened overnight. Just as the serious outbreaks we are seeing today took hold in 2018, lack of action today will have disastrous consequences for children tomorrow.”

Science & Enterprise reports frequently on vaccine technologies to prevent infectious conditions like measles, as well as therapeutic vaccines that treat diseases after they’re contracted. A few recent examples are listed below.

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