HHS, CDC Address Ongoing Measles Outbreaks

Henrietta Brewer
May 4, 2019

It said this is largest number of cases reported in the USA since 1994. If you have not been vaccinated or have not had measles, you are at risk.

According to the CDC and the company that makes the measles vaccine, there is no shortage of it at the moment.

Officials have warned that music festivals can be hotspots for measles and anyone who has not had two doses of the MMR vaccine is at risk.

"You can certainly get one from your family doctor, but you can also go to your local pharmacy", said Weaver. Vaccination against the measles virus is the only safe and effective means of preventing the disease.

Nancy Messonnier, M.D., director of the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, updated participants on the agency's efforts to prevent future outbreaks and to support communities where outbreaks are ongoing.

"We need to improve our vaccination rates", said Dr. Allyn Nakashima, an epidemiologist with the health department. The county and school district would both comply with state law if a measles case is spotted and report it to state agencies.

Measles is so contagious that if one person has it, up to 90 percent of the people close to that person who are not immune will also become infected.

CDC recommends all children get two doses of MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 through 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age. "Vaccination is our most powerful tool to control the spread of imported measles".

Measles cases have been confirmed in Los Angeles and Orange counties in recent days, causing the Los Angeles County's Department of Public Health to quarantine hundreds of UCLA and Cal State Los Angeles students and faculty members who may have been exposed to the highly contagious disease. After two doses, more than 99 per cent of people are protected. Adults vaccinated prior to 1968 with an inactivated measles vaccine or an unknown vaccine should be revaccinated with at least one dose of the vaccine.

The state board issued a press release that reported more than 700 people in 22 states have been diagnosed with measles this year, including one person in Indiana. But adults born between 1957 and 1989 may have received only one, potentially weaker, dose or no doses. Most people born before 1957 are considered immune, because largely everyone was infected at that time, when vaccines were not available.

Children 12 months and older should receive two doses of MMR vaccine separated by at least 28 days.

"In addition to advising vaccination for all individuals at risk, the Ministry of Health is collaborating with healthcare providers on island to assure that all are on heightened alert to the possibility of measles".

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