The Growing Measles Problem in Thailand

11 June 2019, Dr. Donna Robinson, MedConsult Clinic

Measles is highly contagious yet relatively easily avoidable. We have a safe, effective, inexpensive vaccine against this highly contagious disease. Despite this, many are still hesitant to vaccinate their children due to previous misinformation.

Thailand is one of the Top 10 countries ‘blamed’ for the global spike in Measles cases seen over the past three years. Since 2017, the number of measles cases have roughly doubled each year in Thailand, according to the World Health Organisation. This vaccine hesitancy is not surprising considering a previous false medical report claiming that the MMR vaccine is associated with the development of autism. No correlation between the MMR vaccine and Autism was demonstrated by many robust scientific trials following this, with the original report writer being prosecuted for reporting misinformation for their own financial benefit. Unfortunately, the damage had been done by this point and fear of the vaccine was widespread.

In the case of measles virus, 2 doses of MMR (Measles-Mumps-Rubella) vaccine is very effective. The first dose is given to the child during the age of 1 and the second dose during the age of 4 to 6 years old.

In children, the vaccination schedule is as a simple as two injections of the combined MMR vaccine (Measles-Mumps-Rubella vaccine). The first dose is given at the age of 1 and the second dose between the ages of 4-6 years old. The MMR Vaccine is available here at MedConsult Clinic for only 671 baht.

If you are adult who has not had the MMR vaccinations, the WHO recommends that you are vaccinated. Although, measles predominately affects young people aged between 20-40 years and often presents more severely in this age group. The vaccination schedules involves two injection schedule given 4 weeks apart from each other, and you can have these at any age.

This recommendation applies particularly to these groups:

  • Children
  • Students at post-high school educational institutions
  • Health care workers
  • International travellers
  • People identified by public health authorities as being at increased risk during an outbreak

With just one cough from an infected individual able to infect 9 in 10 people within two hours, you can begin to see how contagious measles really is. An individual can be contagious up to four days before the rash occurs up until around 3-4 days after the rash has been present.

So far, having just enough people vaccinated in a given country has kept it at bay but with more people travelling and in highly-crowded areas (i.e. schools, universities, airports), this may not last too long. And as we have seen, Measles is indeed on the rise again.

Don’t hesitate and get in contact today. If you are not sure whether you or your children have had both vaccines, we can easily check your immunity for Measles, Mumps and Rubella with a simple laboratory test. Please feel free to email us (info@medconsultasia.com), give us a call (02-018-7855), book an appointment (medconsultasia.com) or simply walk-in to MedConsult today, to make sure you’re all up-to-date on your vaccines or to get vaccinated.

About the Author:

Dr. Donna Robinson is a UK qualified, trained and experienced doctor (MBBS, MRCP, MRCGP,  DRCOG, Dip Occ Medicine, Thai Medical Licence). She has been a resident in Thailand for over 26 years and is one of a select few western doctors in Thailand with a Thai Medical Licence.

For more info, please contact MedConsult Clinic:

Tel: 02-018-7855
Clinic Mobile: 092-269-4368
Address: The Racquet Club, 8 Sukhumvit Soi 49/9, Floor 3, Building 2
Email: info@medconsultasia.com
Website: www.medconsultasia.com
Facebook: MedConsultClinicAsia
Clinic Hours: Monday-Friday 08.00-18.00, Saturday: 08.00-14.00

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The contents contained here are not intended to be used for the diagnosis or treatment of a health problem or as a substitute for consulting a licensed medical professional. Health information should always be carefully reviewed with your health care provider.