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CDC warns of global measles outbreak

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(WQOW) - The CDC is issuing caution after 22 million babies missed their measles vaccinations in 2020.

This is the largest increase in two decades brewing the perfect storm for outbreaks of the virus to occur.

In 2019, 1,282 individual cases of the contagious virus were confirmed in 31 states, the greatest number of cases recorded since 1992. 

The spotty red rash, is among the most contagious of viruses, experts say it travels by touch, surfaces, and air, lasting up to two hours on its own.

According to area pediatricians, measles shots are generally given at the 12 month check-up and again between the ages of 4 and 6.

The measles were declared eliminated by the U.S. due to the vaccine in 2000, but now, 21 years later, outbreak of the virus is growing.

"Now what we're seeing is that people have been missing their well-child appointments, and so they're missing their vaccines, and so we're at a greater risk of measles outbreak now, because we have just fewer vaccinated people," said Katie Udenberg, Prevea Health Pediatrician. 

The CDC also said in its release that although cases dropped off in 2020, surveillance of the virus decreased by more than 80%. 

Other symptoms of the measles include high fever, cough, runny nose and watery eyes.

The pediatrician said the rash begins at the head and works its way down

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