Saturday, 20 April, 2019

Washington under state of emergency as measles cases rise

Washington measles outbreak is causing concern among Idaho health officials Washington under state of emergency as measles cases rise
Celia Hoffman | 29 January, 2019, 18:37

Washington state health officials declared a state of emergency after a recent outbreak of measles.

Twenty-six of the confirmed patients had not been vaccinated against measles, and the vaccination status of four others who were infected is unknown. Studies show nearly 30 percent of children younger than five who get the measles will have to be hospitalized, reports CBS News correspondent Jamie Yuccas. Among the people in Clark County, 30 of them are unvaccinated, 24 are children under the age of 10, nine are between 11 and 18 years old, and one person is between 19 and 29 years of age.

Measles was eradicated in the USA after a safe and cheap vaccine was developed in 1963, but in recent years, outbreaks from NY to California have sickened hundreds.

The number of confirmed measles cases near Portland grew to 31 on Friday - an outbreak boosted by lower-than-normal vaccination rates in what has been called an anti-vaccination U.S. Infected droplets from the individual with measles can spray into the air or land on a surface, where they remain active and contagious for hours.

Eighteen states including Washington allow parents to decide not to vaccinate their children due to moral, personal, or other beliefs.

"We already send the letters to the parents", said principal Andrey Dolbinin.

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"Two weeks after the exposure you might see some cases, and those people who got sick are exposing other people".

"Anti-vaxxer" parents and activists in Washington and nearby OR have been calling on the states to not require the measles vaccines.

"It's their lives on the line, honestly, if they're not vaccinated and something like this happens, then what am I going to do to save them?"

NY state is facing its worst outbreak in decades, with more than 200 cases.

Before the vaccine, 400 to 500 people died from the measles each year, 50,000 people were hospitalized and 4,000 people developed brain swelling that can cause deafness, he said. Although it's not clear where he became infected, the man said he'd recently traveled to Clark County. One vaccine provides 93 per cent immunity from measles, and two shots provide 97 per cent protection. Ninety percent of people exposed to measles who have not been vaccinated will get it, public health officials said. Those people stayed home and later got ill, Armstrong said. The symptoms include fever, dry cough, runny nose, sore throat, conjunctivitis, tiny white spots with bluish-white centers on a red background inside the inner linking of the cheek, and a skin rash.

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