Measles outbreaks continue to spread rapidly. In the first seven months of 2019, 364,808 cases of measles were reported worldwide, three times more than 129,239 in the same period of 2018, the World Health Organization ( WHO ) has warned, highlighting how the incidence of the disease in Africa it has multiplied by ten .
The three countries most affected in the period have been Madagascar (127,000 cases), Ukraine (54,300) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (7,500), as noted in a press conference today by WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier , who stressed that The number of cases in seven months has already exceeded the total registered in the whole year 2018 .
Likewise, there have been significant outbreaks of this disease in countries such as Angola, Cameroon, Chad, Kazakhstan, Nigeria, the Philippines , Sudan, South Sudan and Thailand .
"Lack of awareness about the need to get vaccinated"
Lindmeier has stressed that the increase in cases is related to different factors , including from the lack of access to health and vaccination services to outbreaks in conflict areas or with large displaced communities.
He has also cited among these factors "misinformation and lack of awareness about the need to get vaccinated ", referring to phenomena such as anti- vaccine movements.
In Europe the number of cases registered in the first six months of the year is around 90,000, more than the total figure of 2018 (84,000) and assuming an increase of 120 percent (more than double) compared to the first half of last year .
WHO has also noted that the number of cases in the United States (1,100) is the highest in 25 years , and reported increases of 50 percent in patients in the Eastern Mediterranean and 230 percent in the Western Pacific.
On the positive side, the organization has detected a decrease of 15 percent of the cases reported throughout the Americas.
The contagious disease, which can be prevented with the inoculation of two vaccines during childhood , "is causing major losses to health systems, disabilities and deaths in various parts of the world," said the WHO spokesman.
Lindmeier has also warned that the cases registered by WHO are only the tip of the iceberg of the real situation , since it is estimated that only one in 10 cases are reported.
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