Journal article

WHO CRITERIA FOR MEASLES ELIMINATION: A CRITIQUE WITH REFERENCE TO CRITERIA FOR POLIO ELIMINATION

H Kelly, M Riddell, A Heywood, S Lambert

EUROSURVEILLANCE | EUR CENTRE DIS PREVENTION & CONTROL | Published : 2009

Abstract

Smallpox was formally declared as eradicated in 1979. Smallpox is the only infectious disease of humans that has ever been eradicated. Poliomyelitis has been eliminated from three of the six World Health Organization (WHO) regions although not all countries within those regions always meet the elimination criteria. Elimination criteria for measles are being discussed. We use poliomyelitis and measles as examples to illustrate our assertion that the current approach to documenting measles elimination relies too heavily on criteria for surveillance quality, disadvantaging countries with long established and relatively inflexible surveillance systems. We propose an alternative approach to docum..

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Grants

Funding Acknowledgements

B Thorley and K Grant from Australia's National Poliovirus Reference Laboratory kindly provided the Figure. Dr Thorley provided advice on polio eradication in Australia. We also thank D Featherstone, Dr A Dabbagh, Dr D Sniadack and Dr P Strebel, all from WHO, for their critical comments.