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Indiana's health commissioner working to stop the spread of measles allowing vaccine without Rx

Over 700 cases of measles have been reported this year and Indiana is trying to prevent it from continuing to spread.

Posted: Apr 30, 2019 10:39 PM

BRAZIL, Ind. (WTHI) -- More than 700 people in 22 states including Indiana and Illinois have been diagnosed with measles just this year.

"It is a disease that's very easily caught. It's airborne and so if you sneeze or cough or breath on something you could come back two hours later and touch that area and still pick it up," Lynn Hostetler, pharmacist, and owner of Lynn's pharmacy said. 

Because of this outbreak, Indiana's health commissioner has said that you can go into almost any pharmacy and get the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, kind of like you would the flu shot.

But that is not the case in Brazil Indiana at Lynn's pharmacy.

"I'm not doing immunizations at this point in time. Part of it's the billing, part of it's just a hassle, and part of it is I'm not 100% sold on vaccines," Hostetler said.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine -- or MMR vaccine is safe and 97% effective at preventing measles after the second dose.

Nationally, the number of cases reported in the U.S. is the highest it's been since 1994.

"It's probably just a combination of factors we haven't had measles for almost 20 years it's been eradicated in the country you just haven't heard about it," he said. "So, people don't do the vaccinations like they were. So when the danger goes away or the incidence goes away then we lower our guard"

If you are wanting to get the MMR vaccine first call the pharmacy to make sure it's available because it's not mandatory for pharmacy's to have it.

Also, make sure you tell the pharmacist you're using the state health commissioners standing order.

All vaccine costs will be billed to insurance.

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