Measles Is No Joke
Find out if you are protected
What you need to know about measles
Measles is a serious respiratory disease that causes a rash and fever. Measles typically starts with a high fever, runny nose, cough, and red and watery eyes. Tiny white spots may appear in the mouth two to three days after symptoms begin. It's followed by a rash that starts on the head and then spreads over the body. Measles is highly contagious and spreads through coughing and sneezing. The CDC advises that you and your child are protected with the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine.
The most important group to reach is children, says the CDC. That’s because measles outbreaks can spread quickly in preschools and kindergartens. Some adults, however, should talk to their doctor and consider getting an MMR vaccination.
The vaccination is considered preventive under your Tufts Health Plan coverage and is available at no cost to you.
Were you born after 1957?
If you were born after 1957, you should talk to your doctor to be sure you are protected if an outbreak occurs in your area.
People born after 1957 generally had only one MMR dose, according to the CDC. One dose is about 93-percent effective at preventing measles, but anyone in that age group can still get a second dose, health officials say.
Two doses are about 97-percent effective. Even if someone has had two doses (or can’t remember), doctors say it is okay to get a third dose.
The CDC also recommends that the following individuals be vaccinated:
- Children 12-15 months old and a second dose at 4-6 years
- Students in post-high school educational institutions
- Frequent international travelers who are 6 months of age and older
- Health care workers
- Women of childbearing age
Individuals at any age who are worried about their immunization levels should speak to their doctor.