Measles: Dangerous, Contagious and Preventable

Statement from Dr. John Cullen, president American Academy of Family Physicians
Measles: Dangerous, Contagious and Preventable

Vaccines are safe, effective and they save lives.

Science proves there is no link between vaccines and autism. As each outbreak of a preventable infectious disease like measles unfolds, family physicians and our colleagues in the medical community fight to keep the public safe and combat the damage that fake news unleashes.

- Dr. John Cullen, AAFP President

Measles Vaccine: AAFP
The CDC reports that cases of measles in the United States have increased. Between Jan. 1 and Feb.14, 2019, 127 individual cases of measles have been confirmed in 10 states. The states that have reported cases to CDC are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, New York, Oregon, Texas, and Washington. This is the greatest number of reported cases in a calendar year since 2000, when measles elimination (i.e., the absence of continuous disease transmission for 12 months or more in a specific geographic area) was documented in the United States.

-- Approximately 9 of 10 susceptible persons with close contact with a measles patient will develop measles.
-- Approximately 30 percent of patients who have measles develop one or more complications.
-- More than 95 percent of individuals who receive a single dose of MMR will develop immunity to all 3 viruses (measles, mumps, and rubella).
 

Patient-facing resources from AAFP's familydoctor.org:
Measles(familydoctor.org) - Measles (also called rubeola) is a serious respiratory illness. This means it affects the lungs and breathing tubes. It also causes a rash and a fever. It is a very contagious disease. It can be spread to others very easily. In rare cases, it can be deadly.

The Importance of Vaccinations(familydoctor.org) - There has been some confusion and misunderstandings about vaccines. But vaccination is a very important part of family and public health. Vaccines prevent the spread of contagious, dangerous, and even deadly diseases. These include measles, polio, mumps, chicken pox, whooping cough, diphtheria, and HPV.

Infographic: Measles: It Isn’t Just a Little Rash

AAFP Policies
Immunization Exemptions
The American Academy of Family Physicians supports immunization of infants, children, adolescents and adults as defined by recommendations set forth in the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices and approved by the AAFP. With the exception of policies which allow for refusal due to a documented allergy or medical contraindication, the AAFP does not support immunization exemption policies.
Immunizations
The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) endorses the concept that all children and adults, regardless of economic and insurance status, should have access to all immunizations recommended by the AAFP (cont.)


American Family Physician Journal

Vaccine Adverse Events: Separating Myth from Reality


Measles: CDC(www.cdc.gov)
Measles starts with fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes, and sore throat. It’s followed by a rash that spreads over the body. Measles is highly contagious and spreads through coughing and sneezing. Make sure you and your child are protected with measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine.


Measles outbreaks(www.cdc.gov) related to unvaccinated international travelers are ongoing in the following jurisdictions:

Make sure you are vaccinated against measles(www.cdc.gov) before traveling internationally.


Measles Outbreak: Your Questions Answered(www.nytimes.com) - informative article from the New York Times
Measles was declared eliminated in the United States in 2000, but scattered outbreaks have occurred in recent years. This year there have been five — in New York, Texas, and Washington State — for a total of more than 120 cases. Here’s what you need to know about the disease and the risk of getting it.