ECDC publishes the monthly measles monitoring report for October 2011

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Since the last European monthly measles monitoring report (EMMO) published on 18 October, over 1 000 new measles were detected in the EU and EEA/EFTA countries. This brings the total number of cases in 2011 to more than 30 200.

No new measles outbreaks were reported from EU and EEA/EFTA countries during October 2011. Two cases of subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE), one of whom died, were reported in October 2011. SSPE is a late fatal complication of measles infection.

Measles, a highly infectious vaccine-preventable disease, is re-emerging in Europe. Countries within the European Region of the World Health Organization, which include EU and EEA/EFTA countries, have committed to eliminate measles by 2015. Elimination of measles requires sustained vaccination coverage above 95% with two doses of a measles-containing vaccine (MCV).

ECDC is monitoring measles transmission in these countries and produces epidemiological updates. The EMMO aims to provide timely public updates on the measles situation in Europe for effective disease control measures, and in support of the common 2015 measles elimination target.

In September 2011, the coordination of surveillance of measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases was transferred from the Statens Serum Institut in Denmark (the former EUVAC.NET hub coordinator) to ECDC; the EUVAC.NET website migrated to ECDC and is now maintained and moderated by ECDC. In October the EUVAC.NET Forum was replaced by EPIS–VPD, an ECDC-moderated platform for the rapid exchange of confidential information on vaccine-preventable diseases.

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