Last month, following 50 confirmed cases and 11 suspected cases of measles, Clark County, Washington State declared a public health emergency. Now, locals are scrambling to get vaccinated, according to Kaiser Health News.
Compared to January of last year, measles vaccinations in Clark County increased by 500% from 530 doses to 3,150 doses. The number of vaccinations against measles has increased by about 30%, from 12,140 doses last January to 15,780 in January, announced Kaiser Health News.[[[[27 devastating infectious diseases]
The measles virus is extremely contagious but is also considered "extremely rare" because it is easily preventable with vaccines. But an increase in anti-vaccination movements across the country and even in other parts of the world left children unprotected and vulnerable to infection.
The outbreak in Washington State is one of three current outbreaks of measles in the United States. There are also epidemics in New York and New York State.
The MMR vaccine protects against three different viruses: measles, mumps and rubella. (There is also another form of vaccine, called the MMRV vaccine, that protects against these three diseases, in addition to chickenpox, the virus that causes chickenpox.)
Children must receive two doses of MMR vaccine. The first must be administered when the child is between 12 and 15 months and the second when it is between 4 and 6 years old, depending on the mode of employment. Centers for Disaster Control and Prevention. If a child receives a dose of the vaccine, he is protected from infection in 93% of cases. With two doses, a child is protected 97% of the time, according to the CDC. Adults who have not been vaccinated should receive at least one dose of MMR vaccine, according to the CDC.
Once the vaccine is administered, it takes about 72 hours to provide protection.
Originally published on Science live.