News from the FDA/CDC

U.S. measles cases climb to over 800 for the year


The United States put 75 new cases of measles on the board last week, bringing the total for the year to 839 as of May 10, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Number of measles cases reported to the CDC

There are 10 states dealing with ongoing outbreaks now that Pennsylvania has been added to the list, the CDC reported May 13. The state has had five cases so far, all in Allegheny County. New York City continued to have the most active outbreak, adding 43 more cases in Brooklyn last week for a total of 410 in the city since the beginning of 2019, NYC Health said.

Several of this year’s outbreaks were predicted in an analysis published in the Lancet Infectious Diseases (2019 May 9. doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(19)30231-2). Investigators identified the 25 counties most likely to experience a measles outbreak in 2019 – a list that includes Queens, N.Y. (adjacent to Brooklyn), Multnomah, Ore. (adjacent to Clark County, Wash., where 71 people were infected earlier this year), and San Mateo, Calif., where 4 cases have been reported.

“We recommend that public health officials and policymakers prioritize monitoring the counties we identify to be at high risk that have not yet reported cases, especially those that lie adjacent to counties with ongoing outbreaks and those that house large international airports,” senior author Lauren Gardner of Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, said in a written statement.

The outbreak in Clark County was declared over in late April, but Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill on May 10 that removes the personal/philosophical exemption for the MMR vaccine from the state’s school and child care immunization requirements. “We must step up our leadership to educate the public about the critical role vaccines have in keeping us healthy and safe, and continue working with communities to improve vaccination rates,” Washington State Secretary of Health John Wiesman said in a written statement.

In Oregon, a bill that would eliminate religious and philosophical exemptions to child vaccination requirements passed the state house of representatives by a 35-25 vote and is moving to the senate. Gov. Kate Brown has said that she plans to sign the bill, according to

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