In an effort to prevent a Boston University-style measles outbreak at Harvard, University Health Services (UHS) has begun an aggressive program to immunize any students, faculty or staff who may be susceptible to measles in an effort to prevent a possible epidemic.
Some 56 students at B.U. and others at MIT and Boston College have broken out with measles, prompting the Federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to ask Harvard to adopt a systematic immunization program, officials said yesterday.
UHS, which has already immunized hundreds of students and faculty, has gotten more aggressive, posting leaflets across the entire campus to alert Harvard affiliates to get immunized, said Sholem Postel, UHS director of professional service.
While no cases have yet been reported at Harvard, Postel said the older students and faculty may still succumb to the disease because laws requiring immunization of children only came into full force in the late 60's.
"As each day goes by the chance lessens that anyone at Harvard will contract measles" Postel said, but added that "there's Everybody we immunize is worthwhile" because they will be protected for the future.