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HHS HealthBeat (June 26, 2012)

Traveling measles

A man receives a vaccine before he travels internationally.
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From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

If your summer vacation plans include foreign travel, bring back pictures, trinkets, clothes, other goodies – but not measles. The measles virus is highly infectious – typically by sneezing or coughing.

The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci, says there’s been a spike in measles cases. Dr. Fauci points to cases among U.S. residents returning from abroad.

“People come into the country who are unvaccinated and were infected, and people who live in the United States who go traveling come back and bring it back, and they themselves expose other people who are unvaccinated.”

Americans have very high vaccination rates for measles. But you’ll be literally good to go if you check with your doctor to be sure you’re fully vaccinated before you leave.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss

Last revised: June 26, 2012