The importance of children being fully vaccinated has been highlighted by a record number of measles cases across the country. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, from January 1 to May 10, 2019, 839 people from 23 states were reported to have measles, the majority of whom were not vaccinated. Regional cases have been reported in MA, NY, NH, as well as Quebec, Canada.
To protect against measles, 95% of children in a child care or school setting must be immunized with the MMR vaccine. This creates a level of “community immunity” that can keep the disease from spreading. The good news is that overall, 97% of Vermont kindergarten through 12th grade students met the two-dose requirement for MMR vaccine. However, wide variation exists among Vermont schools – ranging from 0–100% coverage – creating pockets of vulnerability where measles can easily spread.