CDC Issues Measles Vaccination Alert Amid US and Global Outbreaks

CDC Issues Measles Vaccination Alert Amid US and Global Outbreaks

Measles, a childhood infection caused by a virus, was once prevalent but is now preventable with vaccination. Also known as rubeola, measles can be severe, even fatal, particularly for young children. While global measles mortality rates have declined due to increased vaccination, the disease still claims over 200,000 lives annually, predominantly among children.


Regrettably, recent upticks in measles cases and outbreaks domestically and internationally prompted the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to issue an alert on March 18. The CDC encourages clinicians to collaborate with schools and educators to ensure children are up-to-date with their measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccines. As of March 28, 97 measles cases had been reported across 18 US states this year, primarily linked to international travel and unvaccinated populations.


Symptoms typically manifest 10 to 14 days post-exposure and include fever, dry cough, runny nose, sore throat, inflamed eyes (conjunctivitis), and a distinctive rash characterized by Koplik’s spots and large, flat blotches. The infection progresses over 2 to 3 weeks.


Full vaccination entails two doses of the MMR vaccine, with the initial dose administered at 12 to 15 months of age. Measles is contagious for about eight days, starting four days before the rash onset and ending four days post-rash appearance.


Seek medical attention if you suspect exposure to measles or if you or your child exhibits measles-like symptoms. Review your family’s vaccination records, particularly before children commence daycare, school, or college.


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