For the first time since 2019, a confirmed case of measles has been recorded in Texas, occurring in Hood County.

According to a report by the Texas Department of State Health Services, a young child was diagnosed with measles despite not traveling to an area where measles is spreading or having any known exposure to anyone with measles. The case in 2019 involved an Austinite who had traveled to Europe. It was the first confirmed case of measles in Austin in 20 years. That same year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported the largest outbreak of measles in the U.S. since 1992 with 1,274 cases.

“The best way to prevent getting sick is to be immunized with two doses of the measles-containing vaccine, which is primarily administered as a combination of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine,” state officials reported.

Measles is a highly contagious disease that can cause serious health complications and can even be fatal. Preventing measles through vaccination is the best way you can protect your family and others in the Columbus community.

“Along with DSHS and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we recommend children receive one dose at 12 to 15 months of age and another at 4 to 6 years,” said Dr. Troy Millican, family medicine practitioner at Columbus Community Hospital. “Without the vaccine, children are more likely to get infected and more likely to have severe complications if they do get sick.”

Talk to your doctor about the measles vaccine and any questions you may have.

The measles vaccine was introduced in 1963 and its widespread use has led to a more than 99% reduction in measles cases since its inception. The measles vaccine is safe and effective, and two doses are 97% effective against the virus that causes measles.

Schedule your vaccine appointment here.