Health officials: One out of 10 Oklahoma toddlers has not received measles vaccine
OKLAHOMA CITY – As cases of measles are on the rise across the country, Oklahoma health authorities are warning parents in the Sooner State to take precautions against the virus.
In 2014, the United States saw 644 measles cases, the most since it was eliminated in 2000.
As of Feb. 6, there have been 121 people from 17 states that have been diagnosed with the measles.
“One out of 10 Oklahoma toddlers has not received the first dose of measles vaccine,” said Dr. Terry Cline, Commissioner of Health. “We strongly recommend that parents make sure their children receive the first dose of measles vaccine on time. These toddlers who haven’t received the vaccine are at risk for measles. The best way to protect yourself and your family is to be vaccinated against measles.”
Toddlers can receive the MMR vaccine as soon as they reach their first birthday.
Public health officials recommend that all children receive two doses of MMR, with a booster dose occurring between 4-years-old and 6-years-old.
Measles is a highly contagious respiratory disease that starts with a mild to moderate fever, runny nose, red eyes, and cough.
A few days later, a rash will appear at the top of the forehead.
Eventually, it will spread to the rest of the body and be accompanied by a fever.
Measles can lead to pneumonia and other complications, especially in young children and adults over 20.
The disease can also cause serious problems in pregnant women and those with weakened immune systems.