Measles are on the rise also in Greece and health authorities point to a spike in infections cases in the last four months. Alone in Corinth, in north-eastern Peloponnese, 18 children were hospitalized and some of them were transferred to hospitals in Athens due to the severity of the cases. “We are in a phase of epidemic outbreak,” Greek health professionals warn.
The danger of measles spreading in Greece is real, the Health Ministry said beginning of the month. the Ministry said that some 100 cases of measles have been reported since June, a significant rise given that, before this period, the rate stood at roughly one infection per year.
A similar spike in measles cases has also been reported in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Romania.
The ministry said that, since April, the Hellenic Center of Disease Control and Prevention (KEELPNO) has started a campaign to raise awareness and to provide advice to groups considered vulnerable to the disease. KEELPNO has also made recommendations to nursing homes.
According to KEELPNO, 14,000 cases and 41 deaths have been recorded in Europe for the time 2016-2017.
by 3. Sept 2017, 100 cases of measles were recorded in Greece, the KEELPNO said in a statement stressing that the majority of cases were recorded in Southern Greece.
“It mostly concerns young children of Roma communities, as well as 25-44year-olds from the general population of people who are insipid in measles, including health care professionals who were not vaccinated or were not fully vaccinated. No death has been recorded in Greece.”
Authorities say the generally high level of vaccination coverage of children in the country is a positive factor, but should not lead to complacency.
The Greek Doctors’ Association blames the ‘anti-vaccination movement’ for the return of the disease.
In an interview to Athens News Agency on Monday, Takis Panagiotopoulos, Professor for Child Health at the National School of Public Health and scientific adviser to KEELPNO, warned “we are in a phase of epidemic outbreak of measles.”
He stressed that “90 of the 100 recorded cases refer to Greek citizens” and underlined “it is not a desease that appeared because of the migrants.”
He urged for vaccination for children and teenagers but also adults born after 1970 who were not affected by measles.People should check whether they had both does of the vaccination.