A girl died of measles at the Radboud university medical center in Nijmegen last month. The hospital confirms this after reporting from the Gelderlander. It is not known where the girl contracted the disease and whether she had an MMR shot (against mumps, measles and rubella). The hospital does not make any announcements about this for privacy reasons.
Measles is one of the most contagious viruses and is almost completely preventable by vaccination. The virus is usually spread through tiny airborne droplets and causes symptoms such as fever, muscle aches, and red spots on the face and neck.
Very small chance
A vaccination program against measles started in the Netherlands in 1976. Before then, there were hundreds of thousands of cases each year. Now there are about ten, says the RIVM. Epidemics can still break out from time to time among people who do not get vaccinated. In 2013, a 17-year-old girl from Zeeland died in an outbreak.
The chance of dying from measles in the Netherlands is less than 1 in 10,000. According to RIVM, about 250 children die from the disease every day in developing countries, mainly due to complications such as brain swelling and dehydration. The World Health Organization says serious complications are most dangerous for children under 5 and people over 30.
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