March 19, 2019

State of emergency declared in U.S. measles outbreak

28 January 2019, 09:22 | Silvia Roy

Twenty-one of the 30 people infected in Clark County are under 10 years old, with eight between the ages of 11 and 18 and a lone case of someone between 19 and 29, according to the county's Public Health Department.

Clark County is an area American Health authorities call an "anti-vaccination hot spot".

The source of the outbreak affecting Washington has not been determined.

Around 88 per cent of children in the province have been sufficiently vaccinated against the disease.

"The existence of more than 26 confirmed cases in the state of Washington creates an extreme public health risk that may quickly spread to other counties".

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Doctors say it's a red alert for anyone in King County who has not been vaccinated against measles.

Locations and venues include Portland International Airport, at the Moda Center during a Portland Trail Blazers basketball game, an Amazon Locker location and stores such as Costco and Ikea.

Health officials in British Columbia are warning residents about a measles outbreak in Washington State. The proportion of children receiving no vaccine doses by 2 years old rose from 0.9% among those born in 2011 to 1.3% among those born in 2015, the CDC reported in October. For now, public health officials are focused on preventing additional exposure.

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.

The CDC recommends people get the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine to protect against those viruses. 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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Measles is highly contagious and spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

Those who may have been exposed should watch for early symptoms of fever and malaise and then a rash starting on the head and moving down the body.

Two doses of the vaccine in childhood are 97 percent effective and provide lifetime immunity.

"It's not a very rapidly moving disease, it takes a week to three for someone to become sick", said Dr. Jeffrey Duchin, a public health officer for Seattle and King County, in an interview with King 5.

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