With the growing number of outbreaks plaguing our nation, Get Immunized, Idaho wants to help make parents aware of what they need to do to ensure they and their children are protected.

“We haven’t seen outbreaks like this in our lifetime and that is leaving many wondering what they need to do,” said Dr. Alicia Lachiondo, Get Immunized, Idaho spokesperson. “It is as easy as making sure your children are all up-to-date on their immunizations and then making sure parents have their boosters.”

Measles is a highly contagious disease that spreads through a cough or sneeze. With a record-breaking number of cases, The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) suggests the MMR vaccine to protect children and adults against measles, mumps and rubella. To ensure your family is protected the CDC encourages parents to follow this schedule:

  • Children 12 to 15 months old should get their first dose.
  • Children 4 to 6 years old should get their second dose.
  • If a child has not been vaccinated on the recommended schedule, it is not too late. Parents should talk to their doctor immediately.
  • Teens or adults who were never vaccinated should get at least one dose.
  • Adults in high-risk situations (post-secondary students, healthcare personnel, and international travelers) who were never vaccinated should get two doses.
  • Women of childbearing age should make sure they are vaccinated before they get pregnant.
  • If you were born from 1957 to 1968, you are encouraged to be revaccinated.

More than 700 measles cases were reported this year, the greatest number since 1994 and since measles was declared eliminated in 2000. Cases have been confirmed in 22 states, including three that border Idaho.

“These hundreds of outbreaks show that we can’t be defenseless when it comes to protecting our children and our families and we are facing a threat here in Idaho if we get one confirmed case. Vaccines keep people safe and stop threats. The more aware we are of the facts, but better we can get be prepared by getting vaccines on the recommended schedule,” said Dr. Lachiondo.

*Dr. Lachiondo is a pediatrician with Treasure Valley Pediatrics and the Get Immunized, Idaho spokesperson.