Health departments are reporting nearly a dozen cases of measles have been diagnosed in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Georgia in recent weeks. The Philadelphia Department of Public Health confirmed at least nine cases of measles over the past month after a person contracted the virus outside the U.S. and exposed people at a children’s hospital.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention attributes the increase to international travel and declining global vaccination rates. Philadelphia and Virginia have seen cases linked to travel exposure, while the United Kingdom is experiencing a widening measles outbreak.
Despite the elimination of measles in the U.S. in 2000, the virus can still be brought in by unvaccinated individuals traveling from countries with active outbreaks. Vaccination rates in the U.S., especially among children, remain below targets, posing a risk of larger clusters of cases. The CDC emphasizes the importance of vaccination, as measles is highly contagious and can have severe consequences.
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