Poor Uptake of MMR Vaccine 1-year Post-Measles Outbreak: New York City and Israel

Michal Paret*, Rebecca Trillo, Jennifer Lighter, Ilan Youngster, Adam J. Ratner, Rebecca Pellett Madan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: In 2018-2019, large outbreaks of measles occurred in Israel and in New York City, driven in part by travel of unimmunized children between the 2 communities. Methods: A retrospective chart review was conducted for children tested for measles (March 2018-September 2019) at NYU Langone Health in New York, NY, and in Ramla subdistrict, Israel. Vaccination records were reviewed to determine vaccination status for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) at the time of measles testing and 1-year post-testing. Results: A total of 264 children were tested for measles, and 102 (38.6%) had confirmed measles. Only 20 (19.6%) of measles-positive cases received a full 2-dose course of vitamin A. 82.4% of children with measles were ≥1 year at the time of diagnosis and fully eligible for MMR vaccine. Of the 100 measles-positive cases with available vaccine records, 63 were unvaccinated at testing, and 27 remained unimmunized against MMR 1 year later. At testing, measles-negative children were significantly more likely to have received MMR than measles-positive children (65.4% vs 37%, P < .01). One year later, 70.4% of measles-negative cases and only 57.1% of measles-positive cases had received MMR vaccine (P = .18). Conclusions: The majority of measles cases occurred in unimmunized children eligible for vaccination, and >25% of children in both measles-positive and-negative groups remained unimmunized for MMR 1-year post-outbreak. Our results suggest the need for novel, longitudinal vaccination strategies and increased awareness of the role of vitamin A.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)322-328
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2022


  • children
  • measles
  • outbreak
  • vaccination
  • vitamin A


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