Measles now a concern when traveling in the U.S.

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT)-- Measles is now a concern for vacationers in the United States, not just people traveling internationally.

There have been no cases so far this year in Mesa County, and only one confirmed in Colorado, but the health department is reminding people to be sure they’re up to date on their vaccines before traveling around the United States.

Measles used to be a concern for international travelers, but now with unvaccinated and under-vaccinated places in the country, traveling at home is something you have to watch out for as well, according to Mesa County Public Health.

“Nine out of 10 people who are not vaccinated against measles, or otherwise immune, will become sick with measles. So before traveling, immunization really is the best option in protecting yourself in case you’re exposed to it,” said Andy Tyler, regional epidemiologist.

States with outbreaks reported to the Centers for Disease Control include New York, Michigan, Georgia, and Washington state. Find more info on reported outbreaks here.

There's also some misinformation going around about MMR boosters. The health department says some people incorrectly believe if they got a measles vaccine in the 1960s or 70s, that they should get a booster. They want people to know, that’s not recommended in most cases.

if you have questions, give Mesa County Public Health a call at 970-249-6800.