Health department: Immunize to prevent Measles outbreak

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT)-- One in ten District 51 students isn’t immunized against Measles, Mumps and Rubella according to Mesa County Public Health.

Flu Vaccine, Photo Date: 10/22/10 / Photo credit: Photo: Daniel Paquet / CC BY 2.0 / MGN

They say in order to prevent outbreaks, it's important for at least 93 percent of the population to be immunized; in this case, only 90 percent are immunized, making it easier for Measles to spread.

In Mesa County, 63 percent of elementary schools, 88 percent of middle schools, 100 percent of high schools, and 50 percent of alternative schools have the minimum number of students up-to-date on MMR vaccine.
Although Mesa County hasn't seen a case of Measles since reporting began in 2000, Colorado has had one reported case of measles each year since 2014.

“Children under the age of five usually see more severe complications. They can be as minor as an ear infection or as major as death or swelling of the brain," said Chelsea Stacy, epidemiologist, Mesa County Public Health.

Children younger than five years are at higher risk for serious complications related to Measles, including death. The best way to prevent the spread of Measles is through immunization.