In 2000, the US become the most populous country to have ever eliminated measles. But due to a resurgence of anti-vaccination sentiment, the US is moving backward. Twenty years back, to be exact: 334 cases of measles were diagnosed in the US since the beginning of 2014, five times higher than in 1994.
How many countries are doing better than the US when it comes to measles immunization? 108, according to the latest WHO data available, provide vaccination to over 92% of the population, which was the US percentage in 2012. The US ranks 38th out of 52 countries defined as high-income by the World Bank, and is surpassed by 14 low-income countries, including Kenya, Bangladesh and Cambodia, in terms of the percentage of people vaccinated.
Among the US unvaccinated population, 85% of people chose not to receive the measles vaccine for “philosophical or religious” reasons.