MMR Vaccination Schedule Update
Following a review of the epidemiology of measles in Singapore, which show that a number of children aged below 15 months have been infected with measles over the past few years, the Expert Committee on Immunization has recommended the following changes to the MMR (Measles, Mumps & Rubella) vaccination schedule:
(i) 1st Dose of MMR Vaccination to be given at 12 months of age (this is aimed at reducing the number of measles cases seen in the 12 - 15 months age group, whom previously would not have had their 1st MMR vaccination yet).
(ii) 2nd Dose of MMR Vaccination to be brought forward from 6-7 years, to between 15 - 18 months of age (the 2nd dose is brought forward to reduce the number of susceptible children with partial immunity following a single dose of vaccination).
The above changes to the National Childhood Immunization Schedule is effective from 1st December 2011. Prior to this date, the 1st dose of MMR vaccination has been given at between 12 - 24 months, followed by the second dose at between 6 - 7 years.
As such, for children during the transition period, the following guidelines are to be adopted:
(i) Children who turn 12 months on or after 1st December 2011 should receive 2 doses of MMR vaccine as per the new Schedule.
(ii) Previously unvaccinated children in the pre-school age-range who have yet to receive any doses of the MMR vaccine, should receive the 2 doses with a minimum interval of 1 month between them.
(iii) Children in the pre-school age-range who have received the 1st dose of the MMR vaccine, should be given the 2nd dose.
Children who enter primary school without having completed the 2 doses of MMR vaccination, will be followed-up by the Health Promotion Board's School Health Services.
Be sure to get your child's vaccinations up to date with the new changes the next time you see your doctor.
Frequently Asked Questions About The Updated MMR Schedule:
1. Is there a minimum age for the administration of the MMR vaccine?
The minimum age for the 1st dose of MMR vaccination is 12 months of age.
2. Can the 2nd MMR vaccine be given after the minimum interval of 1 month?
Yes, the 2nd dose of MMR may be given as early as one month after the 1st dose. However, the recommended interval should ideally be at least 3 months after the 1st dose. As such, if the 1st dose is given at 12 months, the 2nd dose is given between 15 and 18 months.