Europe urged to step up vaccinations against measles

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Europe is being urged by the World Health Organization to step up vaccinations against measles. Photo: WHO/F. Guerrero

Europe is being urged by the World Health Organization to step up vaccinations against measles for all age groups and people at risk.

Policy-makers, health care workers and parents in the region are being asked to do their part to put an end to the outbreaks occurring in their countries.

Seven countries have reported over 22,000 cases of measles in 2014, the agency says.

Jocelyne Sambira has more.

The rise in measles outbreaks can threaten Europe's goal of eliminating the disease by the end of 2015, according to WHO.

Even though measles cases fell by 50 per cent from 2013 to 2014, large outbreaks continue, the agency warns.

Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe says he was "taken aback" by the number of people who contracted the viral infection.

The past two decades had seen a reduction of 96 per cent in the number of measles cases in the region.

To support European countries in this effort, WHO has launched a new Vaccine Action Plan.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 0’43″

 

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