Data | India’s measles cases doubled in 2022, while over two crore vaccinations skipped in 2021

FILE PHOTO: A vial of the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine is pictured at the International Community Health Services clinic in Seattle, Washington, U.S., March 20, 2019. Picture taken March 20, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson/File Photo | Photo Credit: LINDSEY WASSON

In India, measles cases more than doubled in the first two months of 2022 compared to the previous year. A similar pattern was observed globally, as measles cases increased by 79% in the same period. The WHO labelled this development as a “worrying sign of a heightened risk for the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases”. The global body cited pandemic-related disruptions and diversion of resources from routine immunisation as the major reasons for the rise. For instance, in India, the first dose coverage of the measles vaccine dropped to 88% in 2020 from 100% in 2018. The relaxation of movement restrictions is another factor that heightens the risk of larger outbreaks. Google mobility data show that in India, visits to parks have increased more than 80% in May 2022 compared to the pre-pandemic levels. By Vignesh Radhakrishnan and Rebecca Rose Varghese

Rise in cases

The chart shows measles cases in the first two months of 2021 and 2022 in select high burden countries

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Vaccine coverage 

The chart shows the coverage of the first and second doses of the measles vaccine in India and worldwide between 2000 and 2020 

Total doses 

 The number of first doses of the measles vaccine administered in India dropped to 25.6 crore in 2021 compared to over 27.4 crore each year in 2018, 2019 and 2020

Ease in restrictions 

The chart shows the increase/decrease in visits to specific places in India on each day in 2022 compared to the pre-pandemic levels. On May 2, retail & recreation visits were 20% higher than pre-pandemic levels. Figures in %

Source: WHO, Google Mobility Index

Also read: Measles: A children’s disease now affecting adults

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Printable version | May 12, 2022 10:01:36 am |