Clark County is one of the counties in the United States most at risk of a measles outbreak, according to a new report by The Lancet medical journal.
The researchers, who correctly predicted where the Zika outbreaks would occur in 2015, last week published “Measles resurgence in the USA: how international travel compounds vaccine resistance.”
According to the researchers, there have been more than 700 reported cases in the U.S. since Jan. 1. “Only 4 months into 2019 the number of cases reported is already the highest since measles was declared officially eliminated in the US in 2000,” the study notes. “These high numbers show that the USA still remains at risk for large measles epidemics such as those recently seen in Europe.”
The researchers predict the top 25 counties in the nation likely to have a measles outbreak, and Clark County was listed number eighth most at risk. The highest-risk counties in the U.S., in order, were Cook (IL), Los Angeles, Miami-Dade, Queens, King (WA), Maricopa (AZ), and Broward (FL).
“Two main factors are believed to contribute to the resurgence of measles cases in the USA: reintroduction of the virus at individual localities through travel from countries experiencing
outbreaks and low vaccination rates fueled by nonmedical exemptions (NMEs),” The Lancet article said.
In late December, the Southern Nevada Health District confirmed the area’s first measles case since 2015. In March, the health district sent out a warning that an international visitor might have potentially exposed residents to the disease.