25 Countries Where Measles Is a Serious Problem

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15. Uganda
> Population: 38.8 million
> Cases in 2018: 2,075
> Cases in 2017: 892
> Cases in 2016: 252

Unless the number of measles incidents is heavily unreported, Uganda hasn’t previously faced a measles outbreak of such proportions. The only year that comes fairly close is 2006, the first for which data is known, when there were 1,035 confirmed cases.

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14. Russian Federation
> Population: 144.0 million
> Cases in 2018: 3,313
> Cases in 2017: 898
> Cases in 2016: 179

With data available only through August, Russia is already undergoing one of the worst years for measles on record. Previously, the worst period on record was 2014, with cases peaking at 3,236.

Measles vaccinations were highly recommended for travelers to the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

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13. Côte d’Ivoire
> Population: 24.3 million
> Cases in 2018: 763
> Cases in 2017: 164
> Cases in 2016: 54

The Ivory Coast as of August already broke the record set in 2011 when there were 619 measles diagnoses. With the exceptions of that year and 2010, the most number of cases the country has had is 164. Interestingly, paying health workers and volunteers via cell phones has helped increase vaccination rates in the country, according to UNICEF.

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12. Iraq
> Population: 39.9 million
> Cases in 2018: 450
> Cases in 2017: 21
> Cases in 2016: 27

While the increase in measles diganoses since 2016 in Iraq is certainly concerning, the country is still a long away from its worst recorded measles outbreak. A decade ago, there were 5,095 confirmed cases. In 2009, there were 8,763 confirmed cases — by far the highest in recent history.

The last nationwide campaign to immunize children against the viral infection took place in December 2016.

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11. Lebanon
> Population: 4.6 million
> Cases in 2018: 875
> Cases in 2017: 126
> Cases in 2016: 44

The last time Lebanon experienced such high numbers of confirmed cases was in 2013. This is consistent with a warning by the WHO, which states that even though safe and free vaccines are available, the virus remains endemic in Lebanon and outbreaks are expected every four to five years. The other times when there were more than 300 diagnoses was in 2006 and 2007 with 845 and 388 cases, respectively.