Public Health Agencies Quietly Addressing Measles Vaccine Failure

Public Health Agencies Quietly Addressing Measles Vaccine Failure

As the messaging from Public Health aimed at the general population continues to shout that the measles vaccine in the MMR is “safe and effective,” behind the scenes, the actual facts of the vaccine’s limitations are slowly being acknowledged indirectly by why of procedural changes.

The vaccine simply does not provide lifetime immunity. It suffers from primary failure (2-10% never develop antibodies) and secondary failure (within 20 years of 2 MMR doses, about 30% of adults are no longer immune), and there’s a wide range of time where many are susceptible to some degree and able to have subclinical infections.

The CDC teaches that one should “presume immunity” after 2 doses of MMR — even if a titer test shows no protection. Why would they do that? Because their own studies show waning protection, a third dose does not extend protection, and they don’t want to panic the public.

Recently, the godfather of vaccination, Dr. Stanley Plotkin,  explained:

To define a correlate of protection by a vaccine is not easy, as I have learned over the years. In 2001, I first wrote about the subject, attempting to simplify it with certain definitions and criteria. Subsequently I realized that nothing is simple, as has been noted from times immemorial! The reasons for this lack of simplicity are manifold, including lack of standardization of critical immunologic tests, the multiplicity of antibody and cellular immune functions, and the many ways in which those functions interact. In addition, challenge dose and number of challenges also figure into estimations of correlates . . .

. . . In the 19th century, Panum recognized that natural infection with measles virus in the Faroe Islands conferred permanent immunity against the disease, and, indeed, that observation may still be true. However, the vaccine gives an attenuated infection, and it is not the case that antibody levels remain permanently elevated in vaccinees. The current situation is responsible for reevaluation of the long-term efficacy of measles vaccine.”

Stanley A Plotkin, Is There a Correlate of Protection for Measles Vaccine?, The Journal of Infectious Diseases, , jiz381,

Public health officials don’t come out and say this directly — they don’t want to admit that after 60 years of mass measles vaccination programs, they have eradicated–not measles–but natural herd immunity to measles–and we are now moving into an era never seen by humans before, one in which infants (born to vaccinated mothers) and fully-vaccinated adults are susceptible to measles.

But behind the scenes, thankfully, some public health agencies are taking steps to ensure that “presumption of immunity” does not endanger the lives of vulnerable individuals for whom a case of measles might prove dangerous. The California Department of Health is teaching Health care providers to NOT presume immunity–because past experience has shown that those with 2 or more MMR doses can and do catch and spread measles.



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