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Infographic – Vaccines Stop Infectious Diseases

Vaccines against disease chart

Click on image for full-size view. (Statista)

17 May 2020. Much of the public discussion of Covid-19 is about the amount of time needed to develop and test a vaccine to stop infections. Until a vaccine is deployed, people in the U.S. and other affected countries will need to continue taking steps that prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2 viruses in the population, including a sharp reduction of public activity.

One of the reasons so much depends on a vaccine is due to their track record in preventing the spread of infectious diseases, and almost completely eradicating the disease in many cases. Data from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report on this track record, displayed in a graphic last week from the business research company Statista. The chart shows annual morbidity or number of cases for a number of infectious diseases each year in the U.S. during the 20th century, with the number of cases reported in 2019.

The chart shows vaccines completely eradicated smallpox and polio, and almost — 98 to 99 percent — wiped out measles, mumps, rubella, and diphtheria. Only pertussis, or whooping cough, is the only infectious disease not quite reaching that level. Thus, much depends on a vaccine to vastly limit, if not eradicate, Covid-19.

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