Some health care good news: Deaths from measles are at an all-time low.

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There is plenty of bad news in the world right now. So I want to kick this year off with some good news — actually great news — from the world of global public health. Because it turns out, when you start looking, we’re actually made some major strides in 2017 on making our planet a healthier, safer place to live.

The good news: Deaths from measles are at an all-time low. The World Health Organization reported earlier this year that, for the first time ever, the number of deaths from measles has fallen below 100,000. Measles deaths have fallen from 550,100 in 2000 to 89,780 in 2016. That works out to a decline of 84 percent over 16 years.

The decline is largely due to increasing availability of the measles vaccine. As the New York Times reports, much of this work has been done through a non-profit called Gavi:

Since 2000, 5.5 billion doses have been given out, according to Gavi, the Geneva-based organization through which most donors support the vaccination effort. The group works with the W.H.O., the United Nations Children’s Fund, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Red Cross, the United Nations Foundation and others.

Vaccination is especially important with measles because it is an incredibly infectious disease — it spreads easier than Ebola or HIV, for example. As Julia Belluz has reported for Vox, one person with measles can infect about 12 to 18 other people.

“What worries health officials is that the measles Read More Here