European Countries Lose Measles Elimination Status
The European Regional Verification Commission for Measles and Rubella Elimination (RVC) determined that 4 countries in the WHO European region lost their measles elimination status. The countries include Albania, Czechia, Greece and the United Kingdom. Before recently, there was steady progress toward measles elimination in the region.
The two countries that currently have elimination status are Austria and Switzerland. For the entire region in 2018, 35 countries have achieved measles elimination compared to 37 countries in 2017. In the first half of 2019, there have been approximately 90,000 measles cases which is more cases compared to 2018.
The increase of measles in the European region has been declared a Grade 2 emergency which allows resources to be deployed to help countries that are affected. In order to address this public health crisis, the European region must focus on social determinants of health and challenges within society that have caused measles to increase in the region.
The RVC is an independent panel of experts that meet yearly to review measles elimination status in the European region.
Read more from the World Health Organization press release here.