97% of Texas Students Protected From Measles

MMR vaccination rates for Texas students exceed national average

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According to the Annual Report of Immunization Status of Students, the overall vaccination rate for Texas kindergarten and 7th graders increased for the 2018-2019 school year. 

And, the vast majority of these Texas students are protected from the measles virus.   

This new Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) report (5/2019), says the measles immunization coverage was 98.85 percent for 7th graders, and 96.93 percent for kindergarten students. 

During 2018, the median vaccination coverage in the USA was 94.3 percent for 2 doses of the measles vaccine. 

This very positive vaccination rate may be one of the reasons the state of Texas has confirmed just 15 measles cases during 2019, and only 9 confirmed cases in 2018. 

This is important news since there are various measles outbreaks impacting students throughout the USA, such as in New York, which has reported 432 of the 764 individual cases of measles during 2019. 

Moreover, 64 percent of measles cases in New York have been reported by under-immunized children.   

The Annual Report of Immunization Status in Texas is a self-reported survey that is used to measure immunization coverage among kindergarten and 7th-grade students. 

For most vaccines, kindergarten coverage decreased by approximately 0.1 percentage points from the 2018-2019 year. 

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Kindergarten conscientious exemption rates increased by at least 0.3 percentage points in every vaccine category, while delinquency rates decreased by 0.11 to 0.20 percentage points.   

For 7th grade students, vaccination coverage improved in the 2018- 2019 school year for the Tdap, meningococcal and varicella vaccines. 

And, conscientious exemption rates increased slightly, by 0.1 percentage points for most vaccines, while delinquency rates decreased by 0.01 to 0.7 percentage points. 

Health officials in Texas say 'it's never too late to immunize your children.' DSHS and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend children receive one dose at 12 to 15 months of age and another at 4 to 6 years. 

Children too young to be vaccinated or who have only had one dose of vaccine are more likely to get infected and more likely to have severe complications if they do get sick, so immunization is especially important for adults and older children who are around infants and toddlers. 

In the USA, there are 2 approved measles vaccines, MMR-II and ProQuad, which are available from most pharmacies. Financial assistance programs can be found at Vaccine Discounts. 

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