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By Helen Regan
February 4, 2015

Measles immunization coverage for 1-year-olds in the U.S. may be at a reasonable-sounding 91%, but there are still more than 100 countries that are more successful at vaccinating their kids against the virus. They include Bangladesh, Russia, Iran and Libya, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

America’s figure of 91% puts it on a par with Angola. To be sure, that’s enormous coverage compared with the Central African Republic (25%) or Equatorial Guinea (42%), but any decline in immunization will leave the country vulnerable as the current measles outbreaks are showing.

The WHO recommends every child be vaccinated against measles with at least one dose before their first birthday.

Countries more successful at immunizing their 1-year-olds than the U.S. include Brazil, Uruguay, Canada, Algeria, Zimbabwe, Egypt, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kenya and nearly all European countries.

From 2012 to 2013 immunization rates in the U.S. saw a slight decline of 1%, the Washington Post reports. The WHO says there are several reasons why the U.S. is being left behind, including complacency and the antivaccine debate.

Read more at the Washington Post.

Write to Helen Regan at helen.regan@timeasia.com.

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