A joint report of the organization and the centers showed, on Wednesday, that recorded measles cases decreased by more than 80% last year compared to 2019, but the failure to vaccinate more children against the disease makes them vulnerable to infection.
The failure to vaccinate nearly 3 million children more in 2020 than the previous year, the largest increase in 20 years, threatens global efforts to eradicate the highly contagious viral disease.
“Large numbers of unvaccinated children, measles outbreaks, disease detection, and diverted diagnostic efforts to support the response to COVID-19 are all factors that increase the risk of measles-related deaths and serious complications in children,” said Kevin Keen, head of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s immunization department.
Measles is one of the most common infectious diseases known, and is more common than Covid-19, Ebola, tuberculosis and influenza.
It can be very dangerous for infants and young children, with pneumonia among its potential complications.