What is measles?

Measles is a highly contagious respiratory disease that is spread through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Measles symptoms start with a fever, runny nose, cough, and red eyes, and are followed by a rash that spreads all over the body. Learn more about measles.

What can you do?

Vaccination with two doses of MMR vaccine is a safe and effective way to prevent measles.

Know if you and your children are protected. Two doses of MMR vaccine provide long-lasting protection against measles. Those who have previously been infected with measles are also protected from being infected with measles again.

Get vaccinated if you are not already vaccinated or are unsure of your vaccination status. Talk with your healthcare provider about getting vaccinated or having a blood test to check for immunity to measles.

Vaccinate your children. The MMR vaccine is included in the routine childhood immunization schedule. Children should receive the first dose at 12-15 months and the second dose at 4-6 years. Older children can be vaccinated, too, if they haven't already.

Call your healthcare provider if you think you or your child might have measles. Call before going to the medical office so the office can take steps to prevent others from being exposed to measles.

If you have more questions about measles, please contact your healthcare provider.

Measles and travel

Making travel plans? Make sure you’re immunized against measles. Measles is still common in many parts of the world in Europe, Asia, the Pacific, South America, and Africa. All international travelers over the age of 6 months should be vaccinated​ against measles prior to traveling. 

Talk to your doctor about travel immunizations at least 4-6 weeks before traveling. People planning international travel should ensure they have already received the recommended two doses of MMR vaccine.

In 2019, several cases of measles were reported in Santa Clara County. These cases were all linked to travel, especially international travel. None of the cases are connected to each other. Read the April 29, 2019 media release in English​ or Tagalog. For previous updates scroll to the bottom.

Information for parents, schools, and child care centers

School vaccination rates

Child care facilities and schools with low vaccination rates are at increased risk for outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases like measles. The measles vaccination rate for children in our county is high - over 97% on average in public schools, and over 94% on average in private schools, though some individual schools may have much lower rates, and some have rates of 100%.

Click below to check for vaccination rate at local schools:

Where to get vaccinated

  • If you or child have a regular healthcare provider, you can talk to him or her about getting vaccinated
  • Travel & Immunization Services offers adults (>18 years of age) vaccinations, including the Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine
  • Community clinics in Santa Clara County that offer vaccination services for children and youth (English/Spanish/Vietnamese )

Santa Clara County measles information for healthcare professionals

Providers Page

What does measles look like? Click on either image to see a larger version

Rash on Torso
Source: CDC



Distribution of Measles Rash
Source: CDC



Previous Measles Updates

June 20, 2019

April 17, 2019, San Mateo County Health Statement

April 9, 2019,​ San Francisco Public Health Notification​

March 29, 2019 ​

March 26, 2019  

March 6, 2019

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