Measles is a highly contagious disease that causes skin rash and fever. (In severe cases, it can lead to sometimes fatal complications such as pneumonia and brain inflammation.)
Melbourne is experiencing increased measles activity—several children have been admitted to the RCH, and cases have occurred in returned travellers.
Anyone who hasn’t been immunised is at high risk of infection—particularly children and healthcare workers.
To help stop the spread of measles, please share this information:
- Immunisation is the best protection against measles.
- Under the National Immunisation Program, a 1st measles vaccine dose is recommended at 12 months of age. A 2nd routine dose is recommended either at 18 months of age or 3.5 to 4 years of age (depending on date of birth).
- If parents request an early second dose for their child (for example, because they are aged between 13 months and 4 years), a second dose can be provided at least one month after the initial dose.
- The second dose will be MMR-Varicella (MMRV) or MMR (for children that have previously received a funded monovalent Varicella vaccine at 18 months of age).
- Whilst there is no active recalling of patients for measles vaccinations, 2nd measles doses administered early are government funded and will be accepted as valid doses by the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR).
- If you are unsure about your child’s vaccination history or your own immunity, check your immunisation records and/or contact your general practitioner.
- Additional measles vaccine doses for adults require a prescription.
For more information contact the RCH Immunisation Centre on (03) 9345 6599 or 1300 882 924.
Further resources can be found at:
Victorian Department of Health: Measles News release