NEW YORK – The number of measles cases in the US reached its peak in 25 years, propelled the spread of misinformation about the vaccine, which can prevent disease, federal health officials said Monday.
The US Centers N for Disease Control and Prevention reported 704 cases as of April 26, an increase of 1.3 per cent with the last tag with 695 reported on Wednesday. The vast majority of cases have occurred in children who had not received the vaccine against measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, which provides immunity to the disease, officials said.
"The suffering we see today can be avoided," said US Health and Social Services Alex Azar on Monday. "We know that vaccines are safe, because they are one of the most studied drugs we have."
Vocal fringe US parents refuse to vaccinate their children faithful, despite scientific evidence that the ingredients in them can cause autism or other disorders.
Some 22 states recorded cases of highly contagious and sometimes fatal disease. None of the victims of the recent outbreak is not dead, but 3 percent were infected with pneumonia, and 9 percent were hospitalized due to complications from the disease, CDC director Robert Redfield said Monday.
President Donald Trump urged Americans last week, to get vaccinated to prevent the spread of measles, changing the course of the remarks he made in 2014, when he expressed doubts about the government providing children recommended vaccine doses.
"Vaccinations are very important. This is actually happening around now, "Trump said on Friday.
The current outbreak was centered in New York, where officials said more than 390 cases have been reported since October, mostly among children in the Orthodox Jewish community in Brooklyn. Most of the newly reported cases were in New York and Los Angeles, officials said on Monday.
National outbreak increased after 82 people in 2018 and more than 40 people in 2019 brought measles in the United States from other countries, mostly to Ukraine, Israel and the Philippines, said federal officials.
Despite the fact that the virus has been eliminated from the country in 2000, which means that more has not been ever-present throughout the year, outbreaks still occur through the travelers arriving from countries where measles is still common, CDC says .