Saturday, 20 April, 2019

Measles Outbreak Hits 23 Cases

Getty Images The measles virus is depicted in this undated file image Getty Images The measles virus is depicted in this undated file image
Celia Hoffman | 26 January, 2019, 18:28

"Clark County Public Health is urging anyone who has been exposed and believes they have symptoms of measles to call their health care provider prior to visiting the medical office to make a plan that avoids exposing others in the waiting room", the health department said.

Because measles is among the most highly contagious of all infectious diseases, it flares up in areas with low vaccination rates, Peter J. Hotez, a professor of pediatrics and dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, told the the Washington Post.

Clark County Public Health offered a replace Tuesday figuring out 23 confirmed instances of the measles, with two extraordinary suspected circumstances.

Health officials are investigating a case of measles in a King County man who visited Vancouver, Wash., where about two dozen cases have been reported. The outlet reported that 7.9 percent of children in Clark County were exempt in the 2017-2018 school year from vaccines required for kindergarten entry, making it a hotspot for outbreaks.

The measles, mumps and rubella vaccine was controversial after a British doctor published a paper linking the vaccine to autism.

In an outbreak report online, Clark County officials note that "measles is extremely contagious". After smallpox was eradicated in 1980, measles became the leading killer of children globally, he said. His research was debunked, but its impact was long-lasting, and vaccine rates plummeted worldwide, including in Washington state. "(The greatest was 667 cases reported in 2014)", the CDC says in its latest update on measles.

Public health officials declared measles eliminated in 2000 because more than a year had gone by without continuous transmission of the disease.

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Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S.in 2000, meaning any new cases of the virus on USA soil past that point had originated outside the country and the virus was not able to survive in the US on its own. The outbreaks were largely associated with travelers who brought the virus back from Israel, where there is now a widespread outbreak.

Federal statistics show that 81 people brought measles back to the USA after travelling overseas, representing a post-elimination record.

Dr. Jonathan Mou at Adventist Health in Portland emphasizes that while the virus is highly contagious, it's also one of the most preventable.

The virus lives in the nose and throat mucus of an infected person and can spread to others through coughing and sneezing.

Measles complications can include ear infections, diarrhea, pneumonia, and rarely, encephalitis (brain inflammation).

"Eighty-one people brought measles to the USA from other countries in 2018", a CDC factsheet said.

"It's not a benign illness", Opel said.

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