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Measles Outbreak Encourages the CDC to Release Guidelines

The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is urging healthcare workers, including oral health professionals, to ensure they have received the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccination amid a surge in measles cases across 17 US states. The CDC reports 97 cases as of March 28, a stark increase from 58 in all of 2023. To combat transmission, the CDC recommends implementing infection prevention measures, including confirming healthcare workers’ immunity to measles or administering two doses of MMR vaccine if not immune. Additionally, facilities are advised to promptly identify and isolate measles cases, adhere to standard and airborne precautions, and promote respiratory hygiene. The agency underscores the importance of managing exposed and ill healthcare personnel. A prior CDC health advisory emphasized MMR vaccination for US residents traveling internationally and all children. Most reported cases in 2024 occurred in unvaccinated children aged 12 months and older. Measles, which is highly contagious, can infect nine out of 10 unvaccinated individuals who are in close contact with an infected person. The virus spreads through direct contact or airborne droplets, remaining infectious for up to 2 hours. Symptoms include mouth spots, fever, cough, runny nose, rash, and red eyes. Affected states encompass Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington. Click here to read more.
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