How Many People Have Died from Measles in 2019?

As measles cases climb, some folks are interested in just one thing, how many people have died from measles this year?

A lot of people are dying from measles this year.
A lot of people are dying from measles this year.

The rest of us?

We understand that as we see more and more cases, it simply increases the chances that someone might eventually die.

How Many People Have Died from Measles in 2019?

So far, we have been very lucky that there have been no measles deaths, even as we are well past 1,000 cases.

Not that 1,000 cases is some magic number where you start to see deaths.

Consider that we only had 188 cases in 2015, when we had the last measles death in the United States. That year, a woman got caught up in a small outbreak in Washington.

Where Are People Dying of Measles in 2019?

There are also many countries with rather small numbers of cases that are seeing measles deaths.

In Samoa, a country that stopped vaccinating last year after two infants tragically died when they got a powerful anesthetic instead of the diluent for the MMR vaccine, four people have died already. Four deaths among about 314 cases, including a 14-month-old, 12-month-old, and an 8-month-old.

And don’t forget that the last death in France, in April 2019, occurred after only 852 cases were reported.

In Romania, the first death of 2019, in January, came after just 133 cases.

Measles acts quickly. Do your part to protect yourself and others.

And since the outbreaks in Europe started in 2016, there have been deaths in:

  • Bulgaria – only 416 cases
  • Portugal – only 202 cases
  • Spain – only 457 cases
  • Switzerland – two deaths and only 197 cases!
  • Hungary – only 24 cases!

Of course, there are more deaths in countries that are seeing more cases.

Again, since 2016:

Israel34,292 (since 2018)
Ukraine41115,000 (2017)
Serbia155,797 (since Oct 2017)
Brazil1219,036 (since 2018)
Tunisia303,141 (2019)
Malaysia62,129 (since 2017)
Thailand235,893 (since 2018)
Guinea141,359 cases (2019)
Liberia51,357 cases (2019)
Uganda51,584 cases (2019)
Samoa4314 (2019)

And a lot more deaths in some countries:

  • Madagascarat least 1,233 reported deaths among over 150,000 registered cases
  • Philippines – at least 676 deaths since 2018, with over 55,000 cases.
  • Venezuela – at least 134 deaths since 2017, with over 9,585 cases
  • Democratic Republic of Congo – over 4,000 deaths this year, with over 200,000 cases
  • Nigeria – at least 275 deaths this year, with over 54,000 cases
  • Chadat least 241 deaths this year, with over 24,000 cases
  • South Sudan – 91 deaths among 2,472 cases since November 2018
  • Niger – 53 deaths among 9,741 cases in 2019
  • Angola – at least 64 deaths this year, with over 3,000 cases

Measles is on the rise.

Measles is on the rise in many parts of the world and so are measles deaths.
Measles is on the rise in many parts of the world and so are measles deaths.

Measles deaths are on the rise too. While the risk of complications of measles can be reduced with vitamin A treatment, that doesn’t eliminate them. And the benefit is mostly in those who are already vitamin A deficient. Vitamin A has a much more modest effect in developed countries, where measles deaths still occur.

What to reduce your child’s risk of dying from measles?

Get them vaccinated and protected.

Tragically, this all comes after we were making progress towards measles elimination, reaching a record low for global cases and deaths just a few years ago.

How will we respond? An even stronger effort to finally get measles under control? Or continued worsening, with more cases and more deaths?

More on Measles Deaths in 2019

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