Measles elimination: Progress, challenges and implications for rubella control

Felicity T. Cutts, Justin Lessler, Charlotte J.E. Metcalf

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

49 Scopus citations

Abstract

Measles and rubella are major vaccine-preventable causes of child mortality and disability. They have been eliminated from the Americas and some other regions have also come close to elimination. In this paper, we review regional progress toward measles and rubella control/elimination goals, describe the recent epidemiology of these infections and discuss challenges to achieving the goals. Globally, measles vaccination is estimated to prevent nearly 2 million deaths each year. Despite this remarkable progress, large measles outbreaks have occurred in recent years, often involving older persons who were not vaccinated in earlier years. Such an occurrence would be particularly damaging for rubella control programmes as it could lead to peaks in congenital rubella syndrome. Challenges to achieving and sustaining high vaccination coverage include civil conflict, weak health systems, geographic, cultural and economic barriers to reaching certain population groups and inadequate monitoring and use of data for action. Countries and regions aiming to eliminate measles and control rubella urgently need to improve the implementation and monitoring of both routine and mass vaccination campaign strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)917-932
Number of pages16
JournalExpert Review of Vaccines
Volume12
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2013
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery

Keywords

  • congenital rubella syndrome
  • epidemiology
  • measles
  • measles elimination
  • rubella
  • rubella elimination
  • vaccination

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