Q. My family is traveling abroad this summer and our son will be 11 months old at the time of our trip. Should he receive the MMR vaccine prior to traveling?
A. Yes. Because of the increased risk of exposure to measles in many other parts of the world, infants between the ages of 6-11 months should receive one dose of the MMR vaccine before traveling abroad. Also, children 12 months of age or older should receive two doses of MMR separated by at least 28 days. However, if your infant receives a dose of the MMR vaccine before his first birthday, he will still need two more doses to be in compliance for school vaccination requirements.
Finally, check with your child's doctor to make sure she is up to date with other vaccines on the recommended childhood immunization schedule. Also check with a travel expert to confirm whether any additional vaccinations or travel precautions may be necessary. (See the Spotlight section of this newsletter.)