Health Department to Operate Free Measles Vaccination Clinic

PITTSBURGH – The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) announced today a measles vaccination clinic will be offered tomorrow, Wednesday, May 8, for certain targeted individuals who are a higher risk of contracting measles.

This group includes individuals 12 months of age to 61 years of age who have not been vaccinated. Those NOT eligible for the vaccine include children under the age of 12 months of age, those born before 1957 (who have a natural immunity), anyone who has had measles, pregnant women, or those who are otherwise immunocompromised.

The clinic will be held on Wednesday, May 8, between the hours of 12-4 PM at the Homewood-Brushton YMCA (7140 Bennett Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15208). ACHD will have a limited supply of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine available, and individuals will be vaccinated on a first-come, first-serve basis. Those that wish to be vaccinated must sign an intake form and consent form prior to receiving the vaccine. Vaccination is free.

To protect the privacy of residents, there will be no media access allowed inside the location. Measles is a highly contagious disease that spreads through coughing, sneezing or other contact with the mucus or saliva of an infected person. Symptoms typically appear 1-to-3 weeks after infection and include: rash; high fever; cough; nasal congestion; and red, watery eyes.

One dose of the MMR vaccine is 93% effective and two doses is 97% effective. The CDC’s vaccination recommendations include:

• Children 12 months or older should have two doses, the first at age 12-15 months and a second dose between 4-6 years.
• Healthcare personnel, college students, and international travelers should have two doses of MMR.
• Adults born during or after 1957 should have at least one dose of MMR or documented evidence of disease. Adults born before 1957 are considered immune.
• For international travel, infants 6-11 months should have one dose of MMR, and children 12 months of age and older should receive 2 doses of MMR, separated by at least 28 days.

There is no risk in getting an additional dose of the MMR vaccine for individuals who may have already received it. If residents cannot make it to the clinic on May 8, ACHD recommends that any person who is due for measles vaccination schedule an appointment to receive it from their medical provider or to Health Department’s immunization clinic, located at 425 First Avenue, Fourth Floor, in downtown Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh PA 15219 (entrance is on Cherry Way). Clinic hours are: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 9 AM-4 PM and on Wednesday: 1-8 PM.

Anyone who is susceptible to measles or who becomes ill with symptoms of measles should contact their primary care provider immediately. Do not go directly to the office, urgent care center or emergency room, as this may expose other persons. Health care providers who suspect measles should call the Health Department at 412-687-ACHD (412-687-2243) for consultation and to arrange testing.