Measles antibody prevalence rates among young adults in Israel Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • Background: In Israel, vaccination coverage against measles is high, yet seroepidemiologic studies have shown that more than 15% of the 18-year-old population were unprotected against the disease. A 2-dose program of vaccination against measles, mumps, and rubella at the ages of 1 and 6 years was begun in 1990, supplemented by a measles catch-up plan for all 13-year-olds. The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of antimeasles antibodies at induction to the Israel Defense Forces in the first doubly vaccinated birth-cohort. Methods: In 1996, serum samples of 540 recruits, 339 men and 201 women, were tested for measles virus antibody. Findings were compared with surveys conducted in 1987 and 1990. Results: Measles antibodies were present in 95.6% (95% CI, 93.5-97.1) of the recruits. Antibody prevalence was higher in women than in men (99% vs 93.5%; P =.0096). A slightly lower seroprevalence was found in recruits born in the former Soviet Union. The results were substantially higher than the seroprevalence rates found in 1987 (73.3%) and 1990 (84.6%). Conclusions: The high prevalence of antimeasles antibodies in the young adult population in Israel points to the success of the double-vaccination policy in promoting immunity against the disease. (Am J Infect Control 2002;30:165-9.)

publication date

  • January 1, 2002