Geneva - In the last year and half, more than 14,000 people in Europe have contracted measles, and in the first five months of this year alone there were 6,625 diseases, according to the latest statistics from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control () . 35 patients have died as result of the disease - including one in Germany. The ECDC, together with the World Health Organization (), criticizes the “suboptimal” vaccination rates in many countries.
The most recent death was recently reported from Italy. A six-year-old boy died there as result of the supposedly harmless childhood disease. It was the second death in Italy within few weeks. The other 33 deaths occurred in Romania (31 deaths) as well as in Portugal and Germany (1 death each).
From Romania, probably Starting point of the epidemic, 3,922 cases were reported in the last 12 months, in Italy there were 3,508 cases. Germany ranks third with 950 illnesses. Children under five years of age were the most ill (3,637 cases, 39 percent). However, 3,958 patients (42 percent) were 15 years of age or older. Of all cases with known vaccination status, 87 percent were not vaccinated, 8 percent had received only one dose, and 3 percent had received two or more doses (for the others, the number of vaccinations was not known).