CDC reminds providers they don’t need to screen adults for measles immunity

In light of the ongoing measles outbreak in the United States, CDC issued clarifications for health care practitioners who provide adult immunizations. In a letter issued May 17, the agency clarified that recommendations for vaccination and assessing immunity in adults have not changed since the publication of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ 2013 recommendations for the Prevention of Measles, Rubella, Congenital Rubella syndrome, and Mumps.

In summary, CDC said:

  • Providers do not need to actively screen low-risk adult patients for measles in nonoutbreak areas in the U.S. Adults tend to have high population immunity and low risk of the disease in nonoutbreak areas in the U.S.
  • Providers should make sure patients have measles protection before international travel.  U.S. residents traveling internationally are at high risk for acquiring measles abroad. They can also transmit measles to susceptible persons, such as infants, when they return home. Besides international travelers, other adults considered high risk for either acquiring or transmitting measles include students at post-high school education institutions as well as health care personnel.
  • If a patient is traveling internationally and measles immunity is unknown, providers should vaccinate, unless there are contraindications. Serologic testing for measles immunity is not recommended.
  • During outbreaks, providers should consult with local health departments for the most up-to-date recommendations for their community. This may include additional doses of MMR for patients.  

More information can be found on CDC’s website.