A measles outbreak in the Columbus, Ohio, area that began in early November with four unvaccinated sick kids with no travel history at a daycare facility has now expanded to 50 cases, according to the latest data from Columbus Public Health.
Of the 50 cases confirmed so far, 20 were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported. All 50 of the patients are unvaccinated. More than half of the patients are children between the ages of 1 and 2. The latest illness onset is Nov 30.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently warned about a drop in measles vaccination coverage in children, which declined during the pandemic. In a joint report, the CDC and the World Health Organization (WHO) estimate that 40 million kids missed a measles-containing vaccine in 2021, including 25 million who missed their first dose and 14.7 million who missed their second dose.
Estimate: 40 million kids missed a measles-containing vaccine in 2021.
In 2021, 22 countries experienced large outbreaks that have persisted into 2022. When combined with vaccination gaps, the outbreaks pose a threat to all world regions, the WHO and CDC said.
In the United States as of Dec 1, 76 measles cases in five jurisdictions have been reported this year. The number is up sharply from the 49 cases reported in 2021 and the 13 cases reported in 2020. However, the numbers are well below the 1,274 cases reported to the CDC in 2019.