Measles cases increase in the EU/EEA in April – significant outbreaks ongoing


Measles cases continue to increase in a number of EU/EEA countries according to the most recent measles data collected by ECDC through epidemic intelligence and published in the Communicable Diseases Threats Report (CDTR) today.

The highest number of cases to date in 2018 were in Romania (2 712), France (2 173), Greece (1 948) and Italy (805) respectively. Twenty two deaths have also been reported by these countries in 2018. Additionally, there is an ongoing outbreak in England, UK with 440 confirmed measles cases reported this year. Most of the cases have been in individuals over 15 years, highlighting the need for young adults who may have missed vaccination to check their vaccination status and get vaccinated.

ECDC also publishes its ECDC’s monthly measles and rubella monitoring report which gives more information on age and distribution of cases as well as vaccination coverage rates.

In order to reach elimination and protect those most vulnerable to severe complications and death from measles such as infants, 95% of the population needs to be vaccinated with two doses of measles-containing vaccine. Only five EU/EEA countries reported at least 95% vaccination coverage for both doses of measles-containing vaccine according to the most recent data collected (WHO 2016), showing that further sustained action is needed.