State Issues Alert over Measles

Graphic Courtesy of the County of San Diego

Graphic Courtesy of the County of San Diego

Jan. 22, 2015 (SACRAMENTO) As the measles outbreak grows the warnings from the California Department of Public Health grow. Dr. Gil Chavez, state epidemiologist and Deputy Sirector, said:

“Measles is highly contagious and highly preventable through vaccinations. CDPH is urging caution to individuals who are not vaccinated, especially infants under 12 months. Any place where large numbers of people congregate and there are a number of international visitors, like airports, shopping malls and tourist attractions, you may be more likely to find measles, which should be considered if you are not vaccinated. It is absolutely safe to visit these places, including the Disneyland Resort, if you are vaccinated. Therefore, CDPH recommends that anyone not already immunized against measles gets immunized at this time. Two doses of measles-containing vaccine (MMR vaccine) are more than 99 percent effective in preventing measles. If you are unsure of your vaccination status, check with you doctor to have a test to check for measles immunity or to receive vaccination.”

Measles is a very contagious disease and it is still widespread in regains of Europe, Africa, and Asia. It starts with a fever that lasts for a couple of days, followed by cough, pink eye (conjunctivitis), runny nose and finally it’s signature rash.

Complications can include pneumonia, as well as the swelling of the brain (encephalitis) and death.

As of today, Measles has been confirmed in 59 California residents in 2015. Related cases have occurred in three Utah residents, two Washington residents, one Colorado resident, one Oregon resident, and one resident of Mexico.

What is of concern is that according to the state, we are starting to see cases that have no direct connection to the Disney outbreak. In California these are 17 cases, while 42 are linked to Disneyland.

The best prevention for measles is a vaccine, which is safe, and effective.

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Categories: Health, Measles, Vaccines

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