Measles continues its forward march

The measles epidemic affecting Switzerland has spread in the first two months of this year, says the Federal Health Office.

This content was published on February 25, 2008 - 18:07

It said in a statement that 358 new cases had so far been reported in 2008 – more than a third of the total infections registered last year.

In 2007 1,081 people contracted the illness, with the highpoints being in July and August. Switzerland has been in the grip of an epidemic since November 2006.

At the moment it is mainly children and adolescents who are the most affected, said the Health Office.

Last year the Swiss authorities said they feared the country would fail to meet World Health Organization (WHO) vaccination targets for eradicating measles in Europe. They also pointed to health complications arising from the infectious viral illness.

The SonntagsZeitung newspaper reported on Sunday that Swiss officials were warning Euro 2008 football championship fans about the measles outbreak and advising them not to travel to Euro 08 co-host Switzerland this summer unless they were immunised.

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