PRAGUE, April 30 (Xinhua) -- The Czech health ministry reported Monday that over 100 cases of measles have been registered in the country so far this year as of last Friday.
Among the total number of 103 cases, 70 of them were in Prague.
The number of cases is rising across Europe. According to officials, the Czech national army will offer their assistance to medical workers as from May 4.
Vice Minister of Health Roman Prymula, who is also chairman of the Czech Vaccination Society, told reporters on Monday that the reason for the rising number of measles cases is due to public fear of vaccines.
Opinions on vaccines' benefits vary, as some people reject vaccines while some parents postpone the vaccine until the child is older. The minister reminded that the measles vaccination is mandatory, unvaccinated children are not accepted by pre-schools, and their parents face a fine.
Based on the latest statistics provided by the Czech health ministry, three age groups are suffering from the measles. The first one is children age one to four years old, while the second and third are grown-ups aged between 45 and 49, and 35 to 39 years old.
Doctors say that to ensure collective immunity, a vaccine rating of over 95 percent is required. The current figure is about 90 percent. Immunization resulting from vaccination may gradually fade after 30 to 40 years old.
The current situation has caused Prague's largest hospital Motol close its emergency unit until next weekend.
The combined vaccine against measles, rubella and mumps (MMR) was launched in the Czech Republic in 1969. There have been no measles deaths since 1980. The highest figure of 221 measles cases was recorded in 2014.