The Blount Memorial Physicians Group now is making additional doses of the measles vaccine readily available to its patients and members of the community due to growing concerns about the spread of measles, the hospital said in a press release.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending adults born between 1962 and 1989 consider getting a booster shot to protect themselves even if they were vaccinated against the disease as children.
The new recommendation relates to the way the vaccines were administered prior to 1989 when the CDC began recommending two doses of the MMR shot rather than one.
MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccines are very effective, the CDC says, and getting another dose is safe. The number of measles cases across the country hit a 25-year high in April, with more than 700 confirmed cases nationwide in the first four months of 2019.
BMH also is making the measles vaccine available to employees who need it.
Patients are encouraged to make appointments to receive the shots through their primary care providers to determine if getting the vaccine is necessary or recommended based on their personal health histories.
Patients who do not have a primary care provider can call 865-984-3864 to schedule an appointment with a Physicians Group provider.
Parents of children who have not yet received one or both doses of the MMR vaccine also can contact the Physician Group to make sure their children are protected.
For added convenience, shots will be available after-hours and on weekends at East Tennessee Medical Group’s CareToday Clinic, 266 Joule St., Alcoa. They accept walk-in and new patients.