New Measles Outbreak; Time to Get Vaccinated

New+Measles+Outbreak%3B+Time+to+Get+Vaccinated

Christa Pierik, Co-Editor

For the past month news stations have been covering the first measles outbreak in the US since 2015. The outbreak originated in Clark County, Washington with cases found mostly in children under the age of 10 who had not been vaccinated. With this outbreak many parents have a growing concern for their children’s health and have raised many questions on whether they and their children are safe from this infectious disease.

CHS has made sure that if this disease were to become an issue in our district they would be prepared. If you want to know the specific precautions our school would take, click this link.  

The following information about measles and vaccines is provided by the Multnomah County website. (Click here for the full article)

  • Symptoms:
    • 1-3 days: cold-like symptoms including a cough, runny nose, and sore throat develop along w/ a fever and red, itchy eyes
    • 2-3 days: tiny white spots (Koplik spots) appear inside mouth
    • 3-5 days: a rash breaks out, appearing as flat red spots on the face beginning at the hairline and spreading downward. Fevers may spike to more that 104 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Immunity:
    • ~ 2 weeks after the 1st MMR vaccine 95% of people have lifelong immunity
    • ~ 99% of people w/ 2nd MMR vaccines are protected for life
    • It takes about 2 weeks after getting the shot to become immune
    • Healthy adults w/ one documented MMR vaccine are considered protected for life
    • If you have previously had measles in your life then you are immune from getting it again
    • Parents should NOT  intentionally expose their children to measles
  • Those who should be concerned about measles are anyone who:
    • Is not vaccinated or has a compromised immune system
    • Believes they have been exposed to measles
    • Shows symptoms of measles
  • About the vaccination:
    • The youngest recommended age to get the MMR is at 12 months
    • You can get the MMR vaccine at any time; there is no harm in getting one even if you’ve already had one in the past
    • Vaccination is available through primary care doctors and at many local pharmacies
    • If your insurance does not cover vaccinations for your child, Multnomah County will immunize your child for $21.96 per shot. No child is denied immunizations because of inability to pay.

If you have any questions about measles infection or the measles vaccine you should call your primary care provider or your local county health department (Multnomah County: 503-988-3406)