November 13, 2021 at 7:11 pm ESTBy WSBTV.com News Staff
ATLANTA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are warning that measles is once again a global threat, partly due to the pandemic.
Measles is one of the most contagious known viruses. The CDC said 22 million babies around the world missed their measles vaccines because of the pandemic.
Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. in 2000, thanks in large part to vaccines.
But international travelers can bring it into the country and then it can spread among the unvaccinated.
“With just measles vaccine alone, over the past 20 years the estimate is about 32 million lives saved,” Dr. Adam Ratner said. “But none of that is a guarantee and all of that requires constant vigilance and constant ability to deliver vaccines to people who need it.”
The last time there was a widespread outbreak of measles in the United States was in 2019 when more than 1,200 cases were reported, according to the CDC.
Records from the Georgia Department of Health show that 18 of those cases were here in Georgia.
Measles is still rare. Before 2019, one or two cases were reported in Georgia every couple of years.
Still, doctors are recommending parents check in with their children’s doctors and make sure they are up to date with all vaccines. Adults who were vaccinated for the virus before 1989 may also need to ask their doctors about a booster.