On 23 April 2020, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) published its measles annual epidemiological report for 2019.
In 2019, 13,200 cases of measles were reported by 30 EU/EEA member states. The overall notification rate was 25.4 cases per 1,000,000 of the population, which is lower than in 2018 (34.4) and 2017 (35.5), but much higher than the rates observed in 2015-2016 (7.1 – 9.0 cases) before the start of the epidemic in Europe. All countries reported cases and there were 10 deaths due to measles (case-fatality 0.09%).
Age- specific notification rates decreased with increasing age, with unvaccinated children under one-year-old and aged from one to four years most affected. Children under five years of age accounted for 28% of the cases, while adults aged 20 years and over accounted for 49%.
The report highlights that, in order for the measles elimination goal to be reached, many countries need to make sustained improvements in the coverage of their routine childhood immunisation programmes and close the immunity gaps in adolescents and adults who have missed vaccination opportunities in the past.
Source: ECDC, 23 April 2020