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Don’t Wait: Vaccinate – Protecting Against Measles

By Renay Rouse

April 22, 2015

(Martin County, FL) – The Measles Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine is the best way to protect against measles. The Florida Department of Health in Martin County is encouraging all residents who have not been immunized to get vaccinated.

Residents should contact their private health care provider to obtain the MMR vaccine. Residents who do not have a private health care provider can call Florida Community Health Center at 772-219-1222.

Those who are fully immunized, with two doses of the MMR vaccine, have very little risk of developing measles.

Measles is a highly contagious virus that lives in the nose and throat mucus of an infected person. It can spread to others through coughing and sneezing. Symptoms include fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes, sore throat and rash that spreads over the body.

The measles virus can live up to two hours in an airspace where the infected person coughed or sneezed. If other people breathe the contaminated air or touch the infected surface then touch their eyes, noses or mouths, they can become infected. Measles is so contagious that if one person has it, 90 percent of the people close to that person who are not immune will also become infected. Infected people can spread measles to others from four days before through four days after the rash appears.

For more information, visit the Florida Department of Health in Martin County website, www.MartinCountyHealth.com, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at www.cdc.gov/measles/.