Measles outbreak in Minnesota reaches 51 cases

MMR vaccine offers protection from measles
Measles outbreak in Minnesota reaches 51 cases

As the outbreak of measles continues to grow in Minnesota, health officials in Wisconsin are keeping a close eye on the situation.

“We’ve been fortunate in Wisconsin. We have not had cases, but we share a border and our communities are intertwined, and the measles will find the individuals who are unprotected. In this recent outbreak, the vast majority of cases are unprotected individuals,” said Stephanie Schauer, immunization program manager for the Wisconsin division of public health.

Of the 51 cases in Minnesota, at least 10 have resulted in hospitalization.

“The measles can be fatal, so it absolutely can be deadly. We try to remind parents and young adults that there is a vaccine that is available. This is a preventable disease,” said Dr. Mandira Mehra, a physician with SSM Health.

Some of the measles cases in Minnesota have impacted the Somali community there. There is a belief in that culture measles can cause autism. That belief has been scientifically proven to be false.

“We have very high immunization rates here in Wisconsin, but we do know that there are individuals who are not protected and it really is important for everyone to ensure they are protected,” Schauer said.