Measles found in two more states as outbreak grows to 1,022 cases

Measles found in two more states as outbreak grows to 1,022 cases

The country’s worst measles outbreak in over 25 years has spread to two more states in the past week, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There have been 41 new cases of measles in the past week, bringing the total to 1,022 cases as of June 6.  

For the first time in the current outbreak, cases of measles were confirmed in Virginia and Idaho. There are now confirmed cases in 28 states across the country.

The current outbreak through the first five months of this year is already the worst since 1992, and federal health officials have warned the country is at risk of losing its measles elimination status.

Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. in 2000, but this year’s outbreaks have been worsened by anti-vaccine groups that spread misinformation among vulnerable groups.

Officials have been urging parents to vaccinate their children in an effort to combat the misinformation.

“We cannot say this enough: Vaccines are a safe and highly effective public health tool that can prevent this disease and end the current outbreak. The measles vaccine is among the most-studied medical products we have and is given safely to millions of children and adults each year,” Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said last week.

Most of the measles cases are concentrated in New York, where two outbreaks have been raging in Rockland County as well as in Brooklyn and Queens. Most of these cases have involved members of the Orthodox Jewish community.

As of June 10, there have been 262 confirmed reported cases of measles in Rockland County. As of June 3, the latest update, there have been 566 confirmed cases in New York City since the outbreak began in September.