USA Measles Spotlight

520 Measles Cases Reported During the 2019 Outbreak

New York, Michigan, and California remain measles hot spots during April 2019

brooklyn bridge

The 2019 measles outbreak in the USA has now reached 520 reported cases in 20 states. 

As of April 14, 2019, New York continues to lead all other states by reporting 24 additional cases in just 1 week. 

From October 2018 thru April 12, 2019, the state of New York has reported 462 measles cases. Of this total, 155 cases were reported in 2018, and 307 cases during 2019. 

This unfortunate news was preceded by confusing legal actions in New York, which are sending mixed messages to under-vaccinated residents. 

Just 10 days ago in Rockland County, a judge overruled the March 27th State of Emergency order issued by the County Executive, Ed Day.   

Then, on April 8th, the New York City Health Department issued Commissioner’s Orders to all yeshivas in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. This Order means that any private school out of compliance with vaccination guidelines will immediately be issued a violation, which could include a $1,000 fine. 

On an individual state basis, these 20 states have reported measles cases during 2019: 

  • Arizona: The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) has confirmed 1 measles case during 2019. And, ADHS reported on April 12th, this year’s increase in kindergarten exemption rates was from 5.4 percent to 5.9 percent. Immunization coverage for this age groups decreased in the 2018-2019 school year, leaving fewer children protected from disease.
  • California: Two outbreaks linked to patients with international travel have been reported during 2019. As of April 10, 2019, 21 confirmed measles cases, including 13 outbreak-associated cases, have been reported.
  • Colorado: As of February 27, 2019, 1 measles case was reported. Colorado health department disclosed school vaccination rates in an immunization database. The bottom 20 schools have average vaccination rates below 57%.
  • Connecticut: The Connecticut Department of Public Health today is confirming the 3rd case of measles in 2019 in an adult from New Haven County.  
  • Florida: Just 1 Florida resident has been confirmed with measles. About 11,500 children (6%) started Florida public school in kindergarten with some form of exemption from required vaccinations. These exemptions mean that the risk of a measles outbreak in Florida increases. The Florida Department of Health reported handling 15 cases of measles in 2018.
  • Georgia: As of February 2019, 3 cases of measles in Georgia have been confirmed.
  • Hawaii: During 2019, 2 measles cases in unvaccinated children visiting the Big Island from Washington state were confirmed.
  • Illinois: The Illinois Health department confirmed 7 measles cases as of April 5, 2019. WBEZ found four Chicago schools had fewer than 50 percent of children with proof of vaccination.
  • Indiana: Health officials have confirmed 1 case of measles in northern Indiana on April 5, 2019.
  • Iowa:  A Northeastern Iowan was confirmed to be infected with measles on April 15, 2019. The individual was unvaccinated and recently returned from Israel, where measles transmission is occurring. This is the first case of measles in Iowa since 2011,
  • Kentucky: Kentucky health officials confirmed a 2nd measles case, on April 3, 2019. These two individuals are siblings.
  • Maryland: On April 5, the Maryland Department of Health (MDH) confirmed 1 measles case in a Maryland resident. The Department wants to inform anyone who visited 4000 Old Court Road in Pikesville, MD, April 2nd may have been exposed to measles.
  • Massachusetts: On April 1, 2019, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health confirmed that 1 person was diagnosed with measles. And, officials with Hawthorn Medical Associates confirms that a patient with measles had visited a Dartmouth healthcare facility. A letter from Hawthorn Medical Associates dated April 2, 2019, was sent to recent patients at the facility.
  • Michigan: As of April 8, 2019, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has confirmed 39 total measles cases statewide. The Michigan Department of HHS and the Washtenaw County Health Department confirmed on April 12, 2019, a case of measles-related to international travel. This new case is not part of the current Michigan outbreak.
  • Missouri: Just 1 measles case was confirmed in eastern Missouri due to out-of-state exposure.
  • New Hampshire: New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services confirmed 1 measles-infected person on March 1, 2019.
  • New Jersey: As of April 5th, a total of 13 confirmed measles cases have been reported in NJ for 2019. The New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) is working with local health officials to investigate an outbreak of measles associated with Ocean County, declared on March 15. There are currently 11 outbreak-associated cases including 7 in Ocean County residents and 4 in one Monmouth County household. These cases, in addition to 1 highly suspect case, potentially exposed individuals to the infection in NJ between March 9 and March 14th. Assemblywoman Mila Jasey and Herb Conaway, a physician, are seeking to do away with New Jersey’s religious exemption for vaccination entirely. The change is contained in an amendment to a bill they had previously introduced to tighten the state’s vaccination policy; lawmakers approved the revised plan in January. Previously, Between October 2018 and January 2019, the NJDOH reported a total of 33 outbreak-associated measles cases.
  • New York City: As of April 8, 2019, there have been 285 confirmed cases of measles in Brooklyn and Queens since October 2018. NYC had reported approximately 59 measles cases as of December 31, 2018, which indicates, an increase of approximately 226 cases during 2019.
  • Monroe County, NY: As of April 13, 2019, the Monroe County Department of Public Health reported 7 measles during 2019, and no cases during 2018.
  • Rockland County, NY: As of April 12, 2019, there are 167 confirmed reported cases of measles in Rockland County, New York. At the end of December 2018, a total of 96 measles cases were reported. Which indicates, there have been approximately 88 measles cases confirmed during 2019.
  • Sullivan County, NY: 2 measles cases in residents were confirmed on March 14, 2019, and no cases confirmed during 2018.
  • Westchester County, NY: The Westchester County Health Department reported 1 student had been diagnosed with measles during 2019. Additionally, on April 4, 2019, Westchester County Health Commissioner Sherlita Amler, MD, said in a press release, ‘children who have received the MMR vaccine are free to visit Rockland County.’
  • Oregon: As of April 9, 2019, there have been 10 measles cases confirmed.
  • Texas: As of April 5, 2019, the Texas Department of State Health Services confirmed 15 measles cases. Dallas County HHS reported its first confirmed case of measles in a resident since 2017. Texas confirmed just 9 measles cases in 2018 and 1 in 2017.
  • Washington: As of April 12, 2019, Clark County Public Health has confirmed 73 measles cases during 2019. The County is not currently investigating any suspect measles case and will declare the outbreak over after two incubation periods (42 days) without new cases.

NOTE: State-based data and news reports are approximate, subject to timing. Various news sources publish slightly different numbers.

As of April 4, 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 465 measles cases in 19 states, between January 1 and April 4, 2019. 

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Measles is a very contagious disease caused by a virus. It spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The CDC declared measles eliminated in the USA in 2000. 

Which is why the CDC strongly recommends a measles prevention vaccine. Especially prior to traveling aboard.

On March 11, 2019, the CDC updated 17 Travel Alerts for countries reporting measles cases.

Recent measles news:

In the USA, there are 2 approved measles vaccines, MMR-II and ProQuad, which are available from most pharmacies. 

Measles vaccine discounts and financial assistance can be found at Vaccine Discounts.

Relevant Links:  CDC vaccination schedules, CDC vaccine price list, international travel alerts, and report vaccine side effects