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Epidemiology of measles virus outbreaks in Catalonia: importance of immunization in the elimination era
Torner Gràcia, Núria; Borràs López, Eva; Martínez, Ana; Domínguez García, Àngela
Universitat de Barcelona
Eradicating measles represents a major public health achievement, yet outbreaks still occur in territories where endemic measles virus (MV) had been eliminated. In Catalonia from the year 2000 cases have occurred as isolated cases or small outbreaks, both linked to imported cases up to the end of 2006 when a large outbreak started out affecting mainly children ≤15m. In consequence, immunization schedule was amended lowering first dose to 12m. Again new MV importations from neighboring countries triggered another outbreak on November 2010 with a different age distribution sparing small children from infection. Differences in incidence (IR), rate ratio (RR) and 95% CI and hospitalization rate (HR) by age group were determined. Statistic z was used for comparing proportions. Total number of confirmed cases was 305 vs 381 in 2006; mean age 20 yrs (SD 14.8yrs; 3m -51yrs) vs 15m (SD13.1yrs; 1m-50yrs). Highest proportion of cases was set in ≥25yrs (47%) vs 24.2% in 2006 (p<0.001). Difference in IR for ≤ 15m was statistically significant (49/100,000 vs 278.2/100,000; RR:3.9; 95%CI 2.9-5.4) and in HR 30.2% vs 15.7% (p<0.001). The change of the month of administration of the first dose proved successful. Given the current epidemiological situation, continued awareness and efforts to reach young adult population are needed to stop the spread of the virus.
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(c) Research Signpost, 2014
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