U.S. Reports 60 New Measles Cases in Worst Outbreak Since 1994

(Reuters) - The most widespread U.S. measles outbreak in a quarter-century has infected 60 new patients in the last week, raising the total number of confirmed cases to 764, federal health officials said on Monday.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported an 8.5 percent increase in the number of measles cases since April 26, also confirming that the worst outbreak of the measles in the United States since 1994 has now reached 23 states.

Pennsylvania is the most recent state to be hit by the outbreak, after the CDC reported cases in 22 states last week.

Federal health officials say a vocal fringe of U.S. parents who refuse to vaccinate their children have propelled the outbreak, which has mostly affected children who have not received the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine, which confers immunity to the disease. These parents believe, contrary to scientific evidence, that ingredients in the vaccine can cause autism.

Although the virus was eliminated from the country in 2000, meaning it was no longer continually present year round, outbreaks still happen via travelers coming from countries where measles is still common, the CDC says.

This outbreak has escalated since 82 people in 2018 and more than 40 people in 2019 brought measles to the United States from other countries, most frequently Ukraine, Israel and the Philippines, federal officials said.

(Reporting by Gabriella Borter in New York and Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; editing by Scott Malone and Jonathan Oatis)


Woman with Cancer Dies in UAE Jail after Rights Groups, U.N. Call for Release

DUBAI (Reuters) - A woman with terminal cancer who was serving a 10-year prison sentence in the United Arab Emirates has died in jail, Human Rights Watch said on Sunday, two months after the United Nations called for her release on medical grounds.

United Nations human rights experts in February called on UAE authorities to release Alia Abdulnoor to live her final days at home and said they were concerned about reports that she was suffering degrading treatment, including being chained to a bed under armed guard.

Abdulnoor was sentenced in 2017 to ten years in prison after being convicted of charges including financing terrorist groups. She was diagnosed with breast cancer after her arrest in 2015.

"Family members said they believe her arrest was connected to small donations she made to Syrian families in 2011 at the outset of the Syrian uprising," Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a statement earlier this year.

HRW confirmed to Reuters reports on Saturday of her death on social media platforms and Arabic language media.

UAE authorities denied accusations made by rights groups and the family of Abdulnoor that she was denied adequate medical care and regular contact with relatives.

A spokesman of the UAE public prosecutor, cited by the state-run news agency WAM, said she died while receiving treatment in the oncology department of the Tawam hospital, in the city of Al Ain, east of the capital Abu Dhabi.

"Her relatives were allowed to visit her and stay with her there as long as they wished," he said.

According to the HRW report, hospital authorities said Abdulnoor was refusing cancer treatment. Her family said she was forced to sign a document refusing treatment.

The UAE prosecutor said Abdulnoor two years ago refused to take the prescribed treatment for the tumor and she had observed a hunger strike on several occasions while in detention.

(Reporting by Lisa Barrington; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

(Reuters) - The most widespread U.S. measles outbreak in a quarter-century has infected 60 new patients in the last week, raising the total number of confirmed cases to 764, federal health officials said on Monday.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported an 8.5 percent increase in the number of measles cases since April 26, also confirming that the worst outbreak of the measles in the United States since 1994 has now reached 23 states.

Pennsylvania is the most recent state to be hit by the outbreak, after the CDC reported cases in 22 states last week.

Federal health officials say a vocal fringe of U.S.


parents who refuse to vaccinate their children have propelled the outbreak, which has mostly affected children who have not received the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine, which confers immunity to the disease. These parents believe, contrary to scientific evidence, that ingredients in the vaccine can cause autism.

Although the virus was eliminated from the country in 2000, meaning it was no longer continually present year round, outbreaks still happen via travelers coming from countries where measles is still common, the CDC says.

This outbreak has escalated since 82 people in 2018 and more than 40 people in 2019 brought measles to the United States from other countries, most frequently Ukraine, Israel and the Philippines, federal officials said.

(Reporting by Gabriella Borter in New York and Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; editing by Scott Malone and Jonathan Oatis)


Woman with Cancer Dies in UAE Jail after Rights Groups, U.N. Call for Release

DUBAI (Reuters) - A woman with terminal cancer who was serving a 10-year prison sentence in the United Arab Emirates has died in jail, Human Rights Watch said on Sunday, two months after the United Nations called for her release on medical grounds.

United Nations human rights experts in February called on UAE authorities to release Alia Abdulnoor to live her final days at home and said they were concerned about reports that she was suffering degrading treatment, including being chained to a bed under armed guard.

Abdulnoor was sentenced in 2017 to ten years in prison after being convicted of charges including financing terrorist groups. She was diagnosed with breast cancer after her arrest in 2015.

"Family members said they believe her arrest was connected to small donations she made to Syrian families in 2011 at the outset of the Syrian uprising," Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a statement earlier this year.

HRW confirmed to Reuters reports on Saturday of her death on social media platforms and Arabic language media.

UAE authorities denied accusations made by rights groups and the family of Abdulnoor that she was denied adequate medical care and regular contact with relatives.

A spokesman of the UAE public prosecutor, cited by the state-run news agency WAM, said she died while receiving treatment in the oncology department of the Tawam hospital, in the city of Al Ain, east of the capital Abu Dhabi.

"Her relatives were allowed to visit her and stay with her there as long as they wished," he said.

According to the HRW report, hospital authorities said Abdulnoor was refusing cancer treatment. Her family said she was forced to sign a document refusing treatment.

The UAE prosecutor said Abdulnoor two years ago refused to take the prescribed treatment for the tumor and she had observed a hunger strike on several occasions while in detention.

(Reporting by Lisa Barrington; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)