The elimination of measles in the United States in 2000 is one of public health’s most celebrated success stories. But as recent outbreaks have revealed, there is still reason to be concerned about measles.
Make sure your child is protected from the measles. You can protect your child against measles with a combination vaccine that provides protection against three diseases: measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR). The MMR vaccine is proven to be very safe and effective. Some adults need measles vaccine too.
Measles spreads easily through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It is so contagious that if one person has it, 9 out of 10 of the people around him or her will also become infected if they are not protected. Pockets of unvaccinated communities are especially at risk for large outbreaks.
While most people in this country are protected against measles through vaccination, the current outbreak highlights the importance of vaccination, as the majority of the adults and children in the outbreak reportedly either did not get vaccinated or did not know whether they had been vaccinated. One thing we are most certain of, the measles vaccine is safe and very effective. Two doses of measles vaccine are 97% effective, and even one dose is 93% effective.
If you are unsure of your vaccination status, talk with your doctor. By making sure everyone is protected against measles, we can help prevent measles from getting a foothold in this country again.
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