Doctors don’t want you to go to the ER if you’re exposed to measles


COLLEGE STATION, Tex. (KBTX) - As measles cases spread in Texas, doctors are reminding everyone just how important it is to get vaccinated. There are no confirmed cases in the Brazos Valley, but even medical professionals are taking extra step themselves.

Doctors at Baylor Scott & White Health in College Station see dozens of patients every day. But that also puts them more at risk for catching more illnesses.

"With the measles, it can be spread by both contact and by respiratory droplets in the air, and it can actually stay there for several hours after you leave," said Dr. Lauren Steffen.

Dr. Steffen was required to get her immunity tested before going into medical school.

"You can check to see if the antibodies are in the blood to know whether or not you're immune," Dr. Steffen said.

Most people who get both doses of the MMR vaccine have lifelong immunity to the diseases, but some wear off requiring them to get a booster shot.

"They're not really entirely sure why some people's immunity weans over time, they think it may be because they just didn't have a good immune response to the two vaccinations they got when they were younger," Dr. Steffen said.

Doctors are also urging people who think they may have been exposed to the measles to not go to the emergency room. Instead, call your doctor and make a plan.

"Don't go shopping, don't go to the grocery store, stay at home, call your doctor's office," Dr. Steffen continued. “We’ll probably make them wear a mask, and then have them escorted into they're not sitting in a room full of people."

The CDC recommends anyone working in healthcare and higher education to make sure you're up to date with your MMR vaccine.