Measles cases in the U.S. are highest since measles was eliminated in 2000

U.S. health officials have recorded 695 cases of measles in 22 states, CDC reported Wednesday. This is the highest number of cases reported in the country since the disease was eradicated from the United States.

U.S. health officials have recorded 695 cases of measles in 22 states, CDC reported Wednesday. This is the highest number of cases reported in the country since the disease was eradicated from the United States. According to CDC, the high number of cases this year stems in large part from a few big outbreaks: one in Washington state and two in New York that began last year. The agency noted, "Stopping these measles outbreaks is a priority for CDC and we are working 24/7 to protect Americans from this contagious disease. Vaccination is the best way to protect against measles. Today, the overwhelming majority of parents choose to protect their children with vaccines, and we've seen high and stable immunization rates in the U.S. for several years." While the recent outbreaks began with importation, CDC noted that "a significant factor contributing to the outbreaks in New York is misinformation in the communities about the safety of the measles/mumps/rubella vaccine. Some organizations are deliberately targeting these communities with inaccurate and misleading information about vaccines." The agency is urging local leaders to provide accurate, scientific-based information to counter misinformation and is calling on parents to speak to their family's health care provider about the importance of vaccination.