Protect yourself from measles
Aotearoa New Zealand is at very high risk of a measles outbreak. There is a risk of getting measles if you have not had 2 vaccinations, or have not already had measles. The measles vaccine is very effective at preventing measles.
About measles and the vaccine
We know that measles is actually really really contagious.
If one person is infected, you can actually spread it to around 15 to 18 people and it's not a nice disease to have it can make you feel really sick and awful.
Quite often people can end up in hospital because they're so sick and unwell from the infection.
There is no real good treatment to be honest, so the best thing that you can do is actually get vaccinated so you get your body ready to fight off the infection.
If you're all protected, so if I'm vaccinated, every one of my family is vaccinated and someone comes to the house and they've got measles or mumps they actually don't pass it on to us, because the vaccine has actually helped protect us from actually getting the measles, or if we do get it we fight off so well that we don't spread it around we don't give it to other people.
How does the measles vaccine work? What are the side effects?
The vaccine which protects us against measles comes in a combination it's called the MMR.
So measles, mumps, rubella so you actually get protected against 3 different diseases at the same time, which is great news.
MMR vaccine is supposed to stimulate your body to be able to fight off infection if it sees the disease in real-time and so that potentially means that you can have some of those side effects that occur when you are vaccinated.
Getting a temperature that you may actually get a rash afterwards for the vaccine that's actually quite common.
Some people might find their glands actually go up after having the vaccine and some people they can have a little bit of an achy body.
For some people the symptoms may occur in the first few hours, for others it can occur up to a week or two weeks later, but actually they stay well with it, so despite having some mild side effects they actually stay very well.
What should I do if I'm not sure if I have had a measles vaccine?
So if you're not sure if you're vaccinated or not then just talk to your GP or GP nurse, they'll be able to look it up on their system.
Sometimes you may have had your childhood imms book. We can have a look through there and see if you've had the full vaccinations because you only need 2 doses to be fully vaccinated.
But even if we're not sure, if we can't find the records or we think you might be partially vaccinated. It actually does you no harm to have an extra vaccination.
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