New measles cases confirmed in Texas, Washington

Pearl Mccarthy
February 8, 2019

According to the CDC, the current outbreaks (defined as three or more cases) are concentrated in Washington State, New York State, and New York City.

A case of measles was confirmed in Denton County on Wednesday, bringing the statewide total to seven. Three were confirmed in Harris County and one each in Galveston, Montgomery and Bell counties. All individuals are children that were either unvaccinated or had not completed the vaccine series.

NY is dealing with a smaller outbreak of 17 cases in an orthodox Jewish community, and three additional states-Hawaii, Georgia, and Oregon-have all reported at least one new case and are watching for any developments.

Both the DSHS and the CDC recommend children get 1 dose of measles vaccine at 12-15 months of age, and then the 2nd dose at 4-6 years.

Measles is transmitted through direct contact with an infected person or through the air when the infected person coughs or sneezes.

Measles is a highly contagious airborne virus that is preventable with vaccination.

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Measles vaccines are reported to be very effective, protecting people 97 percent of the time after 2 doses.

These new Multnomah County cases are linked to the Clark County outbreak.

Officials say those people were in close contact with the only other person confirmed to have the measles in Multnomah County.

Symptoms include fever, dry cough, runny nose, sore throat, inflamed eyes (conjunctivitis), tiny white spots with bluish-white centers on a red background found inside the mouth on the inner lining of the cheek, and a skin rash made up of large, flat blotches that often flow into one another. The lowest was in 2012 with 55 cases, the highest occurred in 2014 with 667 cases.

"This is a reminder for people to be on guard and be up to date on their vaccinations", said Dr. Umair A. Shah, executive director for Harris County Public Health. Anyone born since 1978 who is unsure if they have received two doses of a measles containing vaccine, such as MMR, should speak with their GP.

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