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Measles Cases and Outbreaks

Measles Cases in 2018

As of November 3, 2018, 220 individual cases of measles have been confirmed in 26 states and the District of Columbia.

The states that have reported cases to CDC are Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.

Trends in Measles Cases, 2015-2018

*Cases as of December 30, 2017. Case count is preliminary and subject to change.
**Cases as of November 3, 2018. Case count is preliminary and subject to change. Data are updated monthly.
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), Notifiable Diseases and Mortality Tables

Spread of Measles

  • The majority of people who got measles were unvaccinated.
  • Measles is still common in many parts of the world including some countries in Europe, Asia, the Pacific, and Africa.
  • Travelers with measles continue to bring the disease into the U.S.
  • Measles can spread when it reaches a community in the U.S. where groups of people are unvaccinated.

Measles Outbreaks

A total of 15 outbreaks (defined as 3 or more linked cases) have been reported so far in 2018.

Outbreaks in countries to which Americans often travel can directly contribute to an increase in measles cases in the U.S.

Reasons for an increase in cases some years:

  • 2017: A 75-case outbreak was reported in Minnesota in a Somali-American community with poor vaccination coverage.
  • 2015: The United States experienced a large (147 cases), multi-state measles outbreak linked to an amusement park in California. The outbreak likely started from a traveler who became infected overseas with measles, then visited the amusement park while infectious; however, no source was identified. Analysis by CDC scientists showed that the measles virus type in this outbreak (B3) was identical to the virus type that caused the large measles outbreak in the Philippines in 2014.
  • 2014: The U.S. experienced 23 measles outbreaks in 2014, including one large outbreak of 383 cases, occurring primarily among unvaccinated Amish communities in Ohio. Many of the cases in the U.S. in 2014 were associated with cases brought in from the Philippines, which experienced a large measles outbreak.
  • 2013: The U.S. experienced 11 outbreaks in 2013, three of which had more than 20 cases, including an outbreak with 58 cases. For more information see Measles — United States, January 1-August 24, 2013.
  • 2011: In 2011, more than 30 countries in the WHO European Region reported an increase in measles, and France was experiencing a large outbreak. Most of the cases that were brought to the U.S. in 2011 came from France. For more information see Measles — United States, January-May 20, 2011.
  • 2008: The increase in cases in 2008 was the result of spread in communities with groups of unvaccinated people. The U.S. experienced several outbreaks in 2008 including three large outbreaks. For more information see Update: Measles — United States, January–July 2008.

See also: The Surveillance Manual chapter on measles that describes case investigation, outbreak investigation, and outbreak control for additional information.

Previous Years

2017

MMWR: 2017 Outbreaks

2016

MMWR: 2016 Outbreaks

2015

MMWR: 2015 Outbreaks

2014

MMWR: 2014 Outbreaks

2013

MMWR: 2013 Outbreaks

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