The Minnesota Department of Health has confirmed a case of measles in the Twin Cities metro area. While little information was provided on the case, the risk to the public is said to be “extremely low.” MDH is currently investigating and will inform anyone who may have been exposed. Measles was eradicated in the United States more than 20 years ago, but declining vaccination rates are increasing the risk of the spread of the disease. Communities need high vaccination rates to maintain herd immunity and prevent outbreaks, according to experts. In the 2023-24 school year, only 87.2% of kindergarten students were fully vaccinated with the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, compared to 92.6% in 2019. Officials believe the decline is due to people not having routine well-child visits during the pandemic.
Parents and guardians can access their children’s immunization records online and make sure they are up-to-date on all vaccinations. Riley Moser is a digital line producer at wcco.com who often covers breaking news and feature stories. In 2022, Riley received an honorable mention in sports writing from the Iowa College Media Association.