Many of our families travel extensively and we want to remind them that other countries don’t always enjoy the level of vaccination found in most states here. In fact, many countries are experiencing a marked increase in the number of cases of measles.
The alarming recent recurrence of measles in the UK and Europe is a reminder that the protection from the MMR vaccine is essential.
Measles, which had virtually disappeared in the UK and much of the developed world, is returning with a vengeance, despite the fact we’ve had an effective vaccine for it since the 1960s.
According to the CDC, as of August 11, 2018, in the US, there were 124 individual cases of measles confirmed in 22 states and the District of Columbia.
Health officials in the UK have declared a “national measles incident” after a five-fold rise in cases over the past year. The latest figures from Public Health England (PHE) show 643 cases of measles in England in the first five and a half months of this year – compared with 274 cases in 2017. Experts are reporting the outbreaks in 2018 are largely affecting young adults who missed out on the MMR vaccine when they were younger.
Figures from the World Health Organization show 21,315 cases of measles last year, compared with 5,273 cases in 2016. The worst were in Romania, with 5,562 cases, Italy with 5,006 and Ukraine with 4,767.
Measles is a highly infectious viral illness. It can cause a rash, cough, runny nose, eye irritation, and fever. It can lead to ear infection, pneumonia, seizures (jerking and staring), brain damage, and even death.
Measles poses the highest risk to pregnant women, infants under 12 months and people with weakened immune systems. It is a highly infectious viral illness.
Vaccinations are one of the best ways parents can protect infants, children and teens from potentially harmful diseases. Vaccine-preventable diseases can be very serious and can require hospitalization, or even be deadly, especially in infants and young children.
Rainbow Pediatrics follows the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics), the CDC (Center of Disease Control) and Bright Futures schedule for vaccine administration.