"Impact of the Measles Vaccine
Prior to 1963, almost everyone got measles; it was an expected life event. Each year in the U.S. there were approximately 3 to 4 million cases and an average of 450 deaths, with epidemic cycles every 2 to 3 years. More than half the population had measles by the time they were 6 years old, and 90 % had the disease by the time they were 15. This indicates that many more cases were occurring than were being reported. However, after the vaccine became available, the number of measles cases dropped by 98 % and the epidemic cycles drastically diminished."
so there we go so before the vaccine 450 people died / year, about one in every 7000/8000
"Second Measles Vaccine Dose
It was discovered that, between 1985 and 1988, many measles cases had occurred in children who had been vaccinated. While there were far fewer measles cases among vaccinated children than among unvaccinated, the children who received only one dose were not always protected from the disease. This led to the recommendation of a second dose for children between the ages of 5 and 19 years of age to ensure protection for those who had not developed immunity from the first dose."
a single dose does not confer full immunity, thats why its recommneded you have a second dose.
"1989-1990 Measles Epidemic
A dramatic increase in measles cases occurred between 1989 and 1991. During those three years, 55,622 cases were reported Most of the cases occurred in children under 5 years of age, with the number of cases among unvaccinated Hispanic and African American populations being four to seven times higher than among non-Hispanic whites. This also marked the first time the number of measles cases for children under 5 years of age exceeded those for the 5 to 19 years old group.
During this period, 123 people died from measles-related illnesses — almost half were under 5 years old. Ninety percent of those who lost their lives had not been vaccinated. The 64 deaths in 1990 was the largest number that had been seen in almost 20 years."
so lets get this straight, low uptake of the vaccine led to an outbreak and many deaths, 1 per 500 infected people in this epidemic.http://www.cdc.gov/nip/diseases/meas....htm#outbreaks