Measles Outbreak Sparks State of Emergency in Washington


No cases of measles have been reported in relation to the outbreak. One child has been hospitalized. Over the weekend, nine more cases were discovered. At the time there were 26 confirmed measles cases. Some of the cases of measles have also visited the Portland International Airport and other busy areas including schools, hospitals, churches etc. OR officials didn't provide the age of the adult infected there.

Individuals with confirmed cases were reported by LCPH to have traveled throughout the Portland Metro area during their communicable period, prompting health officials to issue a warning down the I-5 corridor. Authorities in neighboring OR and Idaho have issued warnings. Adults born in the USA before 1957 are considered immune to measles from past exposures, but in situations where exposure to measles is likely, these adults may benefit from a dose of MMR vaccine to be safer.

But measles is still a big problem in other parts of the world. If that person brings the virus back to a community with a high rate of unvaccinated individuals, it can spread rapidly.

And once there are pockets of disease, the possibility of a measles outbreak increases. The first known patient sought medical care on December 31, but it is unknown if other people may have gotten sick before that and did not seek treatment.

Measles in Washington has spread and health officials urge immunization.

"Because we don't see (measles) that often anymore, it's sort of out of people's consciousness as a health threat", said Louisa Castrodale, an epidemiologist with the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.

"We actually don't have any confirmed cases here in Lane County", said Jason Davis, Lane County Health and Human Services Public Information Officer.

"There's no reason why non-medical exemptions should exist", said Maldonado, chief of the division of pediatric infectious diseases at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

Among those 47 states, 18 states also allow parents to opt out of vaccines if they have personal, moral or philosophical beliefs against immunizations. First, a well-publicized measles outbreak linked to Disneyland in California had just sickened 147 people nationwide.

"It's all hands on deck". "We wouldn't be dealing with this if we had vaccination rates up".

The best protection against measles is vaccination, the centre said. This is another reason why the rest of the community should be immunized protect the few who can not get vaccinated.

Now there are ongoing measles outbreaks in the United States in NY and the Pacific Northwest.

Children receive the first vaccine between 12 and 15 months old and the second vaccine between ages 4 and 6.

Data on Portland's vaccination rate for both shots wasn't immediately available.

Two doses of the measles vaccine protect against measles in 97% of cases, according to the CDC. The tragedy is that the deadly disease and its consequences are nearly 100 percent preventable if the population is vaccinated.

"This is something I've predicted for a while now", he says of the situation in Clark County. It can also be hard to catch early signs of the illness; symptoms generally start to appear seven to 14 days after infection, meaning that people can spread the disease before they know they are sick.

Hawaii allowed the infected visitors to leave five days after the onset of measles, which can be spread to others four days before and four days after the rash begins, according to the Oregonian.

A large sign outside urgent care alerts patients who have measles symptoms, like a runny nose or a high fever, to put on a mask before entering the waiting room. Some 90 percent of people exposed to measles who have not been vaccinated will get it, said Clark County public health director Alan Melnick. Those people stayed home and later got ill, Armstrong said. Several days after these initial symptoms, an uncomfortable rash spreads from the face and neck downward through the rest of the body. The illness can have serious complications, such as pneumonia and encephalitis, or swelling of the brain.