Measles is making a comeback in 2019

 Since January of this year, 22 states have experienced a total of 704 cases of measles, an infectious disease that was supposed to be eradicated almost two decades ago. 

The most recent cases were found at two California university campuses, where nearly 300 students, staff and faculty are being quarantined due to being unvaccinated (or their inability to prove otherwise). Most people who get (and spread) measles are those who have not been vaccinated.

 

 

Since measles tends to break out in geographic pockets, the best way to track the measles outbreak is by state. States that have reported cases to the CDC are Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, Tennessee, and Washington.

As a precaution, the CDC recommends that all persons working in health-care facilities show presumptive immunity to measles. Depending on immunization dates, this information may require time to obtain, so to be pro-active you should attempt to locate your immunization records and have them available should they be requested.

Presumptive evidence of immunity to measles for persons who work in health-care facilities includes any of the following:

  • Written documentation of vaccination with 2 doses of live measles or MMR vaccine administered at least 28 days apart
  • Laboratory evidence of immunity
  • Laboratory confirmation of disease or
  • Birth before 1957

It is always best to be proactive and have the information available before it is requested.

 

Lisa Chadwick
Director of Safety and Risk Management