From the World Cup to Mecca: Can Big Events Spread Diseases?

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Graduation Ceremonies

Measles, mumps and other contagious diseases have surged this year, but Schaffner said the viruses shouldn't mar any graduation ceremonies. The gatherings bring large groups of people together –- sometimes in places where there’s been an outbreak –- but he said graduation weekends are too short to really worry about disease spread.

Read about how measles and mumps are making a comeback in Ohio.

He said people can take comfort in the knowledge that most people in the United states are immune from the measles and the mumps because they've been vaccinated, and there haven’t been many graduation- or concert-related outbreaks.

“When we slip up, we let infectious diseases come in the side door,” Schaffner said. “The classical current example is parents withholding their children from vaccinations, going abroad, picking up measles and bringing it back to spread it to other children. ... That’s a chink, a crack in our protective armor.”

PHOTO: Graduation day is a gathering that can potentially spread disease.
Getty Images
PHOTO: Graduation day is a gathering that can potentially spread disease.

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