MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Over 4,000 people have been affected by outbreaks of measles in Europe since the beginning of 2017, with some cases resulting in the death of the patient, Russian consumer protection watchdog Rospotrebnadzor said in a statement on Wednesday.
"Contrary to previous years, only a few cases of measles could be proven as being imported in 2017 (3 importations for 70 cases announced). These 3 imported cases caused 4 secondary cases. The other cases are considered endemic or with an unknown importation status, although it is likely that for most of the cases announced in Switzerland, there is a hidden importation. Out of the 3 proven cases of importation, 2 came from Italy and 1 from Thailand," Adrien Kay, spokesman for the FOPH, which is part of the Swiss Federal Department of Home Affairs, said.
Kay added that as of April 26, Switzerland had announced 70 cases of measles since the beginning of 2017.
"The Federal Office of Public Health recommends a combined vaccine against measles, rubella and mumps," he added.
Measles is a highly contagious and potentially fatal disease which is a leading cause of death among young children. In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) registered more than 134,000 measles deaths globally, most of which were in children under the age of five.