In the WHO European Region, 42 of 53 countries have interrupted endemic transmission of measles, and 37 countries have interrupted endemic transmission of rubella as of the end of 2016. This was determined by the European Regional Verification Commission for Measles and Rubella Elimination (RVC) at its 6th meeting in June 2017.
“I congratulate each country for fulfilling the commitment to protect its people from measles and rubella and collectively moving the European Region closer to its elimination goal,” said Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe. “However, we cannot become complacent now. Outbreaks continue to cause unnecessary suffering and loss of life, and routine immunization coverage is decreasing. It is unacceptable that 1 in every 15 children still does not receive the first vaccination dose against measles and rubella on time. We will eliminate these diseases from our Region, but need to be ready to walk the hardest last mile.”