Measles Outbreak Linked to Community With Low MMR Vaccination Rates

HealthDay News — An outbreak of measles has been identified in Minnesota, according to a report published in the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Victoria Hall, DVM, from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues describe a measles outbreak in Minnesota that started in April 2017.

The researchers found that the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) was notified about a suspected measles case on April 10, 2017. The patient was 25 months old and was assessed for fever and rash, with onset on April 8. The patient had no history of measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine receipt and also had no travel history or known measles exposure. MDH received a second report of a hospitalized, unvaccinated 34-month-old child, with onset of acute febrile illness on April 10. 

The second patient’s sibling, aged 19 months, had similar symptoms, with onset of rash on March 30; the sibling had also not received the MMR vaccine. Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction testing confirmed measles in the first 2 patients on April 11 and in the third patient on April 13. In all 3 patients, subsequent genotyping identified genotype B3 virus; all 3 patients had attended the same child care center.

“Because the outbreak occurred in a community with low MMR vaccination coverage, measles spread rapidly,” the authors write. “By May 31, 2017, a total of 65 confirmed measles cases had been reported to MDH; transmission is ongoing.”

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Hall V, Banerjee E, Kenyon C, et al. Measles outbreak — Minnesota April–May 2017. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2017;66:713–717.