(CNN) – The United States could soon lose its measles elimination status.
A director at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said there’s a “reasonable chance” that the U.S. will lose its measles-elimination status in October because of ongoing outbreaks in New York.
The measles outbreak in New York City started on September 30, 2018, and has caused more than 600 confirmed cases of measles.
An outbreak in nearby Rockland County, New York has caused more than 300 cases.
Twenty-nine other states have had measles outbreaks in the past 12 months, but those were much more short-lived than the ones in New York.
When the World Health Organization declared in 2000 that the United States had eliminated measles, it was hailed as one of the biggest public health achievements in the nation’s history.