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Philadelphia Health Department announces end of measles outbreak

Measles outbreak in Philadelphia ends, health department says
Measles outbreak in Philadelphia ends, health department says 00:23

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The Philadelphia Department of Public Health officially announced the end of the citywide measles outbreak that spiked between December 2023 and January 2024 on Tuesday. 

The outbreak impacted nine people, eight of whom -- two adults and six children -- were from Philadelphia. Health Department officials said six of the positive Philadelphia cases were hospitalized at one point but have since been released.

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The end of the outbreak comes after the city went 42 days without a new case of the disease. According to health officials, 93% of Philadelphians are up-to-date on their measles vaccine so the outbreak didn't spread further. 

"Thanks to quick work by our staff and collaboration with healthcare and childcare systems throughout the region, we were able to keep this outbreak small and quickly resolved," Dr. Landrus Burress, the Health Department's director of disease control, said in a news release. "I am grateful to the hundreds of thousands of Philadelphians who have safely gotten their routine MMR vaccination, you helped keep us safe."

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The Philadelphia Department of Public Health held pop-up clinics throughout the city where residents could receive the MMR vaccine, which protects against measles, mumps and rubella, for free. 

The MMR vaccine is very effective at preventing measles and the complications that come with the illness, the CDC says. If you're not vaccinated, getting the vaccine shortly after a measles exposure can help prevent disease or make it less severe, according to the CDC.

As the measles outbreak comes to an end, health officials recommend Philadelphians talk with their primary care providers to see if they need to catch up on their MMR vaccine schedule. 

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