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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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Vaccine Preventable Diseases (VPD)

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Measles, mumps, rubella, pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, polio, varicella, pneumococcal disease, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, influenza, meningococcal and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) are all preventable by vaccine.  These common childhood and adult diseases are highly contagious and are particularly dangerous to very young children who have relatively low resistance to infection and more prone to develop serious complications such as deafness, retardation, brain and spinal cord damage and, occasionally, death.

Florida has a very strong and successful immunization program.  Without assurance of high immunization levels, visitors and Floridians would not be able to enjoy the high quality of life the state offers.  Currently, the maintenance of high immunization levels contributes positively to the state’s economy by lower disease incidence, lower healthcare costs and ensuring travelers may confidently visit Florida without contracting a vaccine-preventable disease.

The program ensures a cause and effect response by monitoring immunization levels in vulnerable populations throughout the state, thereby contributing to strategies to attain and sustain high immunization levels.  This has the effect of increasing herd immunity and lowering vaccine-preventable disease rates.

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Vaccine-Preventable Disease Surveillance Report

August 2018

Pertussis

  • Pertussis activity was similar to last month. Overall, the total number of cases remained below the previous 5-year average.
  • 39 cases and 1 outbreak were reported.
  • Incidence remained highest among infants <1 year old. Infants <2 months old are too young to receive vaccinations against pertussis, which is why vaccination of other age groups is so important to help prevent infection in this highly vulnerable group.

Varicella

  • Varicella activity decreased from last month but remained above the previous 5-year average for the sixth month in a row.
  • 69 cases and 1 outbreak were reported.
  • Incidence was highest among infants <1 year old.
  • This month, 44% of cases were not up-to-date on their varicella vaccinations or had unknown vaccination status.

Measles

  • Measles activity increased from last month. An outbreak of 7 confirmed cases was identified in August.
  • All cases were unvaccinated.
  • Incidence was highest among children age six to 11 years old.
  • A total of 1,476 contacts who had potential exposure to measles were identified in 5 main settings; most contacts were in health care settings.

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