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1969 image in West Africa during the Smallpox Eradication and Measles Control Program. Image courtesy of CDC/ Dr. J.D. Millar.
New plan to control and eliminate measles and rubella
15 May 2012
The partners leading efforts to control measles announce a new global strategy aimed at reducing measles deaths and congenital rubella syndrome to zero.
The announcement comes with the publication of new data using a state-of-the-art methodology showing that accelerated efforts to reduce measles deaths have resulted in a 74% reduction in global measles mortality, from an estimated 535 300 deaths in 2000 to 139 300 in 2010.
Progress in sub-Saharan Africa
Vaccination has been key to this progress. Through increased routine immunization coverage and large-scale immunization campaigns, sub-Saharan Africa made the most progress with an 85% drop in measles deaths between 2000 and 2010, according to a new study published in today’s Lancet.
Vaccinating over a billion children
Since 2001, the Measles Initiative has supported developing countries to vaccinate over one billion children against measles. Now, in keeping with the new Global Measles and Rubella Strategic Plan to control and eventually eliminate measles and rubella, the initiative is called the Measles & Rubella Initiative. Measles and rubella elimination naturally go hand-in-hand, as measles and rubella vaccines are routinely combined in a single shot.
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