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Substantial progress has been made within the World Health Organization European Region in recent years towards the measles and rubella elimination targets for 2010. These 2010 targets were set in 2005 by the WHO European Regional Office for Europe, following the approval of the Resolution EUR/RC55/R7 [1,2]. In 2005, 28 (54%) of 52 WHO member states reported a measles incidence of less than 1 per million population (one indicator for measuring measles elimination status) and by 2006, 50 (96%) had introduced rubella vaccine into their national programmes. In 2002, member states began reporting measles cases by age and vaccination status to WHO on a monthly basis [3] and case-based reporting was implemented in 2003. Since that time, the number of countries reporting case-based data has increased from one in 2003 to 23 in 2006. In 2006, countries have been asked to report rubella cases monthly (either aggregate or case-based). The WHO European Region measles/rubella laboratory network has also been strengthened through regular laboratory assessments and proficiency testing and by having subregional meetings.


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