"Japan first introduced the rubella vaccine into its national immunisation programme in 1976 but it was only given to junior secondary school girls. In 1989, Japan introduced the MMR vaccine for all children aged one to six, but that left a 13-year gap where no boys were immunised. Those boys who missed the rubella vaccine in the earlier “girls only” policy – now 20-39 year old men – were 68% of those who contracted rubella in the outbreak.
In order to minimise the risk of importing rubella, as well as protecting individual health, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), for instance, recently issued an alert recommending that travellers to Japan or Poland ensure that their rubella vaccinations were up to date. Pregnant women were urged not to travel at all if they were unvaccinated."