Questions about measles care?

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Don’t let cost be a barrier to getting the measles vaccine from an in-network provider because preventative immunizations, including booster shots, are covered for customers.

In January, the Washington Department of Health announced dozens of confirmed cases of measles and more suspected cases. The best protection against measles is the MMR vaccine, which protects against measles, mumps, and rubella.

“Costs shouldn’t stand in the way of someone who wants an MMR vaccine. All immunizations, even booster shots for adults, are fully covered under our preventive services benefit,” said Dr. David Buchholz.

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. Measles is so contagious that if 1 person has it, 90% of the people close to that person who are not vaccinated will also get it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The CDC advises children get 2 doses of MMR vaccine, usually:

  • First dose: 12 through 15 months of age
  • Second dose: 4 through 6 years of age

If you’re concerned that you or an unvaccinated child has been exposed to the virus, please schedule an appointment with your primary care provider or call the 24-Hour NurseLine.  If you suspect measles, you might need to enter the doctor’s office through a non-public area. It’s important to make arrangements before arrival.

Pay attention to symptoms, such as high fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes, body aches, and a red blotchy rash that appears a few days after the fever starts. The rash often begins behind the ears and around the face and then spreads down the body.

It’s not too late for adults to get vaccinated. Talk to your doctor if you weren’t vaccinated or aren’t sure. 

People who can’t be vaccinated because of age or certain health conditions depend on the rest of the population to be vaccinated to prevent the spread of measles. 

 

Illustration by Alissa Eckert / CDC