While the measles has been eradicated in the United States since 2000, a recent measles outbreak in Minnesota shows a surge of cases in young children. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, a Somali child who contracted measles during a trip to Kenya was left at a drop-in child care center a day before that child developed a measles rash. Three children at the daycare then became infected in the days ahead.
While this year’s jump in cases among very young children is considered unusual, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reminding parents of young children to get their children vaccinated for measles prior to traveling or living abroad.
While the number of reported cases of measles in the United Kingdom are down from previous years, there have been a relatively high number of cases reported in Switzerland, France and Spain recently. Given the geographic spread of cases worldwide, the CDC recommends that parents who are traveling abroad with young children get the vaccinations as early as six months of age. This recommendation has been in place since the 1990s, but it seems that a number of parents have missed the message.