Mesa Fire Dept. gives out free measles vaccines

Posted: Updated:
By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

MESA, Ariz. -- The CDC says there have been 20 new cases of measles confirmed just in the past week. Now, there are two separate outbreaks, the one that started a Disneyland which has been linked to 113 cases, and a second one linked to 10 cases.

So far, 17 states have seen measles cases this year and Arizona is one of them. In an effort to keep the community healthy, Mesa Fire and Medical Department is stepping up and offering free vaccines.

Community nurses along with Mesa Fire Paramedics offered the clinic at Skyline High School Tuesday night from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The free measles, mumps and rubella vaccination was offered to both insured and uninsured adults. "Of course, being a mom, I couldn't find my shot record, but I know where all my children's are," said Corrine Simzyk, a teacher's aide. "I'd rather be vaccinated and I'd rather not hurt myself or other children," she said.

Immunization coordinator David Montemorra with the Mesa Fire and Medical Department says they are specifically targeting adults this season because monthly immunization clinics for children are already in place. He says the best way to prevent measles is through the widespread use of the measles vaccine.

He warns that the illness is highly contagious, but can be easily prevented. "We're getting a lot of that as we've had this outbreak there are certain people that don't have the record or it's unknown so we're here for them providing this service," he said.

School nurse Chris Stopa hopes her decision to get vaccinated inspires others who aren't quite sure. "I supposedly had it but I was really young, so I just wanted to make sure I had one MMR vaccine, but I wanted to have the second so that I knew I was covered," she said.

The Mesa Fire and Medical Department offers vaccination clinics the second Wednesday of every month.