“There are virtually no registers for vaccinations in West Africa other than parent-held records,” she said, adding that an entire “birth cohort of infants could miss out on vaccinations altogether with serious consequences.”
Before the coronavirus pandemic, measles was already making a resurgence in some places. In 2017, there were 7,585,900 estimated measles cases and 124,000 estimated deaths, according to the World Health Organization. By 2018, the last year for which international figures have been compiled, there were 9,769,400 estimated measles cases and 142,300 related deaths.
In 2019, the United States reported 1,282 measles cases, its highest in more than 25 years. The measles vaccine has been available for more than 50 years.
Countries including Brazil, Bangladesh, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan, Nigeria, Ukraine and Kazakhstan are currently fighting outbreaks of measles. Among the countries that have postponed their vaccination programs are Bolivia, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Djibouti,