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12 december 2011

Increased risk of measles in France

Afbeelding - Increased risk of measles in France

Since 2008, outbreaks of measles have been on the rise in various parts of France: 604 cases in 2008, 1544 in 2009 and 5090 in 2010. During the first 3 months of 2011, 4937 cases were already reported. The average age of the patients in the first 3 months of 2011 is 15. Between October 2010 and March 2011, 80% of these cases were reported in 6 regions, mainly in the south-east of France. In these areas, an incidence of over 15/100,000 was found. The regions involved are Rhône-Alpes (incidence 78/100,000), Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (40), Languedoc-Roussillon (31), Franche-Comté (26), Auvergne (20) and Midi-Pyrénées (16). No information is known about the vaccination status of those infected. The average take-up of MMR vaccination in France is only 90%. Outbreaks of measles have been reported in various European countries. In many countries, these are local clusters in areas where there is good vaccination take-up. Consequently, the risk for travellers has not increased significantly. During the holiday period, many Dutch families may be travelling to these areas in France with small children. These families run an increased risk of contracting measles, particularly if they expect to come into extensive contact with the local population in these areas. They are therefore advised to ensure that all unvaccinated children over the age of 6 months are vaccinated. Vaccination of all adults born after 1 January 1970 who have not been vaccinated and who have never contracted measles is also advised.

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