Measles: What You Need To Know
The recent multi-state measles outbreaks in the US have focused attention and concern on this very contagious disease. For more information about measles and measles vaccination, please visit our Measles web page. (Also, see our NEW Measles Information flyer.)
(Related County News Center story:No Measles Cases in San Diego County; Travelers Urged to Vaccinate)
Measles spreads through the air by breathing, coughing or sneezing. It is so contagious that any person who is exposed to it and is not immune will probably get the disease.
Measles develops seven to 21 days after exposure. Early symptoms include cough, runny nose and red eyes. The distinctive red rash usually appears one to four days after early symptoms appear. A person is considered contagious four days before the rash appears. The rash begins on the face and head then proceeds downward and outward to the hands and feet. It fades in the same order it began, from head to feet.
Complications from measles are more common in children younger than 5 years old and adults 20 years and older. Complications can include diarrhea, ear infection and pneumonia. Death can occur from severe complications and the risk is higher among younger children and adults. There is no treatment for measles. Bed rest, fluids and fever control are recommended. People with complications may need treatment for their specific problem.
All persons born in 1957 or after should have documentation of at least one dose of MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine or other evidence of immunity to measles. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends two doses of the vaccine: the first at 12 months of age, and the second between ages 4–6 years.
Persons should check with their regular source of health care to make sure they have had immunizations to protect against measles, whooping cough and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
You can also visit the CDC’s measles web page for more information and links to resources about measles and measles vaccine.
Adults, Find Out What Vaccines You Need With This CDC Tool
Shots are not just for kids. Adults need vaccines, too, based on health conditions, age and other factors. Adults 19 years of age and older can use the CDC Adult Vaccine Assessment Tool to get a list of vaccines they may need, based on their answers to 10 questions. Visit the Tool's web page to learn more.
Flu Season is Here; Get Vaccinated!
Influenza can be a very serious disease, It can make you very sick and can even be fatal. Last year's flu season was one of the most severe on record. Here in San Diego County, there were 20,833 cases of flu reported and 342 people died. That far exceeds the 6,827 cases and 87 deaths reported the previous season.
(See related County News Center story, County Responds to Flu Outbreak at Migrant Shelter)
Flu vaccine is one of the best ways to get protected against flu. For more information about flu and flu season, please visit our Influenza Season 2018-19 web page. And for information about
flu clinics at Public Health Centers and other locations, visit our Flu Clinics web page.
Recommendations for Flu Prevention in Skilled Nursing/Long-Term Care Facilities
The California Department of Public Health has updated its Recommendations for Prevention and Control of Influenza in California Skilled Nursing Facilities. Click here or on the link above to view and download the document.
Survey: San Diego Vaccination Rates Higher than State, Nation
More parents in San Diego County are vaccinating their children compared to the state and the nation.
A survey conducted by the County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) revealed that 80.6 percent of San Diego County children between the ages of 19 and 35 months have received the recommended vaccines. The percentage is just above the federal government's Healthy People 2020 recommended target of 80 percent.
The percentage of fully-immunized San Diego children in this age group is higher than the state (65.3 percent) and the nation (70.7 percent) Immunization percentages for California and the country came from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's VaxView.
"We're ahead of California and the United States, and that is great news for our children," said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. "The higher the vaccination rates, the lower the risks of children getting sick and infecting others."
To read the rest of this County News Center story, including information on adolescent vaccination, please click here or on the red title above..
Hepatitis A Vaccine: Due for shot 2?
The second dose of hepatitis A vaccine is due 6 months or more after the first dose. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if it's time for your second dose. If you do not have health insurance, please call 211 or visit 211sandiego.org to learn more about free vaccinations offered near you. For more information about hepatitis A vaccine, the disease and the local outbreak, please visit the County's San Diego Hepatitis A Outbreak web page and 211SanDiego's Hepatitis A web page.
The flyer pictured above is available in English and Spanish.
Pertussis (whooping cough): Get The Facts
Whooping cough is a very contagious respiratory tract infection. It usually starts with cold-like symptoms, such as a runny nose, low-grade fever and a mild, occasional cough. Since the early stages of pertussis can appear to be just a cold, it may not be suspected or diagnosed until the more severe symptoms start.
See related County News Center story: Pregnant Women Urged to Get Whooping Cough Shot amid Possible Epidemic
After 1-2 weeks, severe coughing can begin. Fits of rapid coughing may be followed by a high-pitched whooping sound. Other symptoms can include vomiting and exhaustion. However, it’s important to note that not everyone with pertussis coughs or makes the whooping sound.
In infants and children, especially those not fully vaccinated, whooping cough can cause serious and life-threatening complications. Half of infants 1 year of age who get pertussis are hospitalized. Of those babies, complications such as pneumonia, convulsions and apnea (slowed or stopped breathing) can result.
Complications in older children and adults are usually less serious, especially in those who have received pertussis vaccine.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the DTaP vaccine be given to children at 2, 4, 6, 15-18 months and 4-6 years. Preteens and adults should get a Tdap booster. Pregnant women should get a Tdap immunization in their third trimerster. Persons should check with their regular source of health care about these and other immunizations.
The CDC’s Vaccine and Immunization website has more information about vaccine-preventable diseases like pertussis, and the immunizations to protect against them.
Public Health Center Immunization Clinics
For information about the Immunization clinics at County Public Health Centers and other locations, please visit the Immunization Clinic web page. Also, please see the information below about eligibility for shots at Public Health Centers.
Eligibility For Immunizations at County Public Health Centers:
The following individuals are eligible to receive immunizations at County Public Health Centers:
- Children and adults who do not have health insurance (adults—only certain vaccines available).
- Adults whose health insurance does not include vaccines (only certain vaccines available).
- Persons 0-18 years who are Alaskan Native or American Indian.
- Persons 0-18
years who have Medi-Cal or are Medi-Cal eligible.
- Persons 6 months and older in need of influenza (flu) vaccine regardless of health coverage.
Individuals are not eligible for vaccines if their insurance includes vaccinations, even if there are co-pays or deductibles.
If you have any questions regarding your eligibility for vaccines at County Public Health Centers, please call your local Center.
INFORMATION ABOUT THE IMMUNIZATION EXEMPTION LAW (SB277)
For information about the law, please visit the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) ShotsforSchool website.
RANDOM DIGIT DIALING TELEPHONE SURVEYS (RDD)
The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency's Immunization Program conducts Random Digit Dialing (RDD) telephone surveys. Interviewers make phone calls to randomly selected phone numbers to assess immunization coverage rates as well as the knowledge, attitudes and beliefs about vaccines among San Diego County residents. Information provided by participants is kept confidential. Surveys provide valuable data to determine what proportions of children living in San Diego County are fully immunized. The information collected helps us plan programs to do a better job of protecting all San Diegans from vaccine preventable diseases. For more information, please contact the San Diego Immunization Program at 866-358-2966.
Live Well San Diego
Live Well San Diego is the County of San Diego's vision for a region that is Building Better Health, Living Safely and Thriving.
Although Live Well San Diego began in 2010 as a health strategy, it has evolved into a greater vision to improve the health, safety and well-being of all County residents. There are three components:
Building Better Health calls for improving the health of all residents and supporting health choices;
Living Safely calls for ensuring residents are protected from crime and abuse, neighborhoods are safe and communities are resilient to disasters and emergencies;
Thriving calls for cultivating opportunities for all people and communities to grow, connect and enjoy the highest quality of life.
To learn more, please visit the Live Well San Diego website.
Central Region Public Health Center and VIP Trailer (Oceanview Boulevard) Also Offer Online Immunization Appointments
The Central Region Public Health Center (5202 University Ave., San Diego, 92105) and the VIP Trailer (3177A Oceanview Blvd., San Diego, 92113) also offer appointments for immunizations (including influenza) online, in addition to their walk-in immunization services. These locations have joined the South Region Public Health Center in offering this service. Click here to check out the Online Appointment System! Appointments cannot be scheduled by telephone..
Recommended Immunization Schedules Available
These easy-to-read schedules show the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention immunization recommendations for people from birth to adulthood. Click on the links below to view the schedules
Schedule for 0-6 years and 7-18 years of age.
Schedule for adults 19 years and older.
More information can also be found on the CDC website here.
Disease Information Resource: County of San Diego Epidemiology Program
The County Epidemiology Program works to identify, investigate, register, and evaluate communicable, reportable, and emerging diseases and conditions to protect the health of the community. For more information about a variety of diseases, such as influenza and Hepatitis A, visit the Program's website here.
Vaccine Information You Need
The Immunization Action Coalition (IAC) has redesigned part of their website to provide a new look for the many great resources they have for the public. Called Vaccine Information You Need, it's a one-stop shop for getting the facts about immunization and how important it is to everyone's health. Click here or on the link above to visit this site.
Resources for health care professionals are available by clicking the link at the top of the new section Vaccine Information You Need. And, as always, health care professionals can access those resources through www.immunize.org.
We’re This Close To Ending Polio
Rotary International and a host of individuals and organizations worldwide are running a campaign aimed at promoting awareness of and support for polio eradication in general and Rotary’s End Polio Now program in particular.
The campaign’s theme is We’re This Close To Ending Polio. Print ads and Public Service Announcements show photos of people doing the “This Close” gesture with their thumb and forefinger, and display type providing the context.
See photos, join the campaign and read more at the End Polio Now site.
Immunization Website For Parents
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has an immunization website for parents. Called For
Parents: Vaccines for Your Children, it features
information about a host of topics of special
interest to parents, including recording
immunizations, finding old immunization records,
vaccinations during pregnancy, what
immunizations a child needs before traveling
internationally, and much more! Visit the
History of Vaccines
(click title or
button labeled "The History of
Vaccines" at lower right to go
This informative and educational website,
created by The College of Physicians of
Philadelphia, "explores the role of
Immunization in the human experience and
examines its continuing contribution to Public
The site features articles
about the History of Anti-vaccination Movements,
DIfferent Types of Vaccines, Ethical Issues and
Vaccines, and much more. One article of note is
an excellent overview of vaccine injury
compensation programs in the U.S., including an
introduction by immunization expert Paul Offit,
featured are timelines
showing the important events in the histories of
diseases and vaccines, science and society and
is a special section just for parents with
features like Top 20 Questions about
Vaccinations, Misconceptions About Vaccinations
and the Development of the Vaccine Schedule. There
are also special sections for educators and the
media. Anyone interested in vaccines and
vaccination will find a wealth of interesting
and helpful information.
Immunizations and Developmental Milestones
for your Child from Birth Through 6 Years Old is
a flyer on which you can keep track of the
immunizations your child needs and also
developmental milestones you see as he or she
grows (such as smiling, talking, walking, etc.).
This free tool is produced by the Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American
Academy of Family Physicians and the American
Academy of Pediatrics. Download it by clicking here.
Video PSA (click to play)!
Vaccines.gov: Consumer-Based Immunization Information Website!
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
hosts an innovative website to help
parents and other consumers learn about the most
effective way to protect themselves and their
children from infectious diseases and learn
about immunization. Vaccines.gov
brings together the best in federal resources on
vaccine and immunizations to provide consumers
with easy-to-understand health information
specifically for their needs.