The US has seen more cases of measles in January than it usually does in an entire year, according to the CDC. A total of 84 cases in 14 states were reported from Jan 1-28.
That’s more in one month than the average 60 measles cases each year that the United States saw between 2001 and 2010, according to the CDC’s Dr Anne Schuchat, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. January’s numbers have been driven largely by the multi-state measles outbreak that originated in two Disney theme parks in California in December, she said.
There have been 67 cases of Disney-related measles reported since late December, occurring in California and six other states, she said. Of those, 56 are included in the January count. About 15 percent of those infected have been hospitalized, she added.
In 2014, there were more than 600 cases of measles, the most reported in 20 years. Many were people who contracted measles from travelers to the Philippines, where a massive outbreak of 50,000 cases had occurred, Schuchat explained.
The United States declared measles eliminated in 2000, meaning that the virus is no longer native to this country. But measles still rages abroad, and can re-enter the United States to infect vulnerable people through travelers.