Measles Cases and Deaths Increasing Worldwide

2020/11/23 16:04

Today's Vocabulary

1. campaigns (n)
a planned group of especially political, business, or military activities that are intended to achieve a particular aim

2. interfere (v)
to involve yourself in a situation when your involvement is not wanted or is not helpful

3. failure (n)
the fact of someone or something not succeeding

4. outbreak (n)
a time when something suddenly begins, especially a disease or something else dangerous or unpleasant

5. recover (v)
to become completely well again after an illness or injury

6. efforts (n)
physical or mental activity needed to achieve something

Measles Cases and Deaths Increasing Worldwide

The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that measles cases and deaths have increased around the world since 2016.

The WHO says the failure to vaccinate children is the main cause of the increase. The organization says an estimated 95 percent of the population must be fully vaccinated to prevent measles from spreading.

Reported cases of measles are lower this year than last. But the WHO says the coronavirus outbreak interfered with vaccination efforts.

Natasha Crowcroft is the WHO’s senior technical advisor for measles and rubella. She told VOA that different plans are needed to prevent new measles outbreaks in the time of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

“The Number One action we need to take is to prevent outbreaks from happening in countries where we have got the highest risks…and there are several where there is not the ability to be able to put the health system in place to be able to rely on,” she said.

Crowcroft says countries where usual vaccinations for children were happening will recover quickly from delays during this difficult period. She says weak countries will continue to be at risk of deadly outbreaks unless fast action is taken.

The WHO reports more than 94 million people are at risk of missing vaccines because nationwide campaigns have been stopped in 26 countries. This led to huge outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Madagascar.

Eight of the 26 countries have now restarted their campaigns. They include Brazil, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Nepal, Nigeria, the Philippines and Somalia.


  1. What  do you think has caused the surge in measles cases?
  2. What do you know about measles?
  3. How do you think measles reappeared after it was eradicated?

Love is like the measles. The older you get it, the worse the attack.

Rainer Maria Rilke