DPH: Case of measles found in New Haven County adult

A health worker holds a vaccine for the Measles Mumps Rubella amid a mumps outbreak in Orange

The Washington Military Department, the release says, is organizing resources to assist the DOH and local officials in easing the effects on people, property and infrastructure. They anxious that it could take months to contain the highly contagious viral illness due to a lower-than-normal vaccination rate at the epicentre of the crisis.

The measles outbreak near Portland has sickened 35 people in OR and Washington since January 1, with 11 more cases suspected, as of Monday.

Inslee said the number of cases "creates an extreme public health risk that may quickly spread to other counties". In recent years, however, the viral illness has popped up again from NY to California and sickened hundreds.

As the number of confirmed measles cases in Southwest Washington and OR grew to 36 cases, health authorities said Monday that their biggest concern is low vaccination rates in schools and the possibility that the crisis could stretch out for months.

"What keeps me up at night is eventually having a child die from this completely preventable situation", he said. The measles vaccine is 98 percent effective. Thanks to "vaccination hesitancy", however, unvaccinated communities are getting hit hard. It is paramount that no more people get infected and that the outbreak is contained.

And with increasing numbers, vaccinated people may be starting to wonder just how protected they are.

In light of the outbreak in Washington, the BCDC is advising British Columbians to review and update their immunization status at any time, and especially prior to any travel.

If children get their measles vaccine, they are 95 percent protected. To find a public health unit anywhere in the province, see the site finder on ImmunizeBC.ca. The measles vaccine consists of two shots, one given by age 2 and the second usually between ages 4 and 6.

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The number of measles cases almost tripled in 2018 to 349 over 2017, when only 120 cases were reported.

One case also has been confirmed in King County, which is home to Seattle and one was confirmed Friday evening in Multnomah County, which is home to Portland. Authorities in neighboring OR and Idaho have issued warnings. Contagious people also went to Portland International Airport, as well as to hospitals, schools, stores, churches and restaurants across Washington's Clark County and the two-state region, county officials said.

Instead, she recommends calling ahead and expressing concerns about measles so the care team can provide guidance on how to most safely bring in the patient.

The vaccine has been part of routine childhood shots for decades, and measles was declared eliminated in the U.S.in 2000.

Early on, measles can look like many other viral illnesses, but the red blotchy rash that comes with it may help set it apart.

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.

Officials still are not sure where this Pacific Northwest outbreak began. The first known patient sought medical care on December 31, but it isn't known if other people may have gotten sick before that and did not seek treatment. One person has been hospitalized in the outbreak. "They are miserable and very sick-appearing", she said. It can be contracted without even being near a person with the virus because it lingers for up to two hours in the air of a room where a person with the measles has been.

"While it is expected that most travellers will be immune to measles, some individuals will be susceptible, including infants less than one-year-old or people who have never been immunized against measles", wrote the BCCDC.

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