Health Officials On Alert After Measles Case Confirmed In Jefferson County

Health Officials On Alert After Measles Case Confirmed In Jefferson County

Now there are 25 confirmed cases, and 100,000 vaccines are expected to hit Canterbury shortly.

"It can now be assumed that measles is circulating widely in our community", the Canterbury District Health Board said in a statement.

The DHB says it's highly infectious - and anyone unvaccinated who's within two metres of someone with measles has a 90 percent chance of catching it.

Travelers to Japan should make sure they are vaccinated against measles with the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine, the CDC notes.

Clinics in the central-eastern region ran out of vaccines after the outbreak started in late February, with an additional 18,000 MMR vaccines expected to be brought in by Wednesday.

The department recommends children get vaccinated at 12-15 months then again at 4 - 6 years.

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Colvin said about one in four people throughout the United States who get the measles will be hospitalized and one out of every 1,000 measles patients will develop brain swelling which could lead to brain damage. The World Health Organization recently warned that anti-vaccination organizations are one of ten major global health threats this year.

However, many countries still have a poor surveillance system, and many people who were suspected with measles didn't seek health care or, if diagnosed, are not reported. In 2015, for instance, there were 154 cases in the first two months of the year followed by just 34 for the remainder of the year, putting it at right about average relative to the past decade's annual totals.

The demand for vaccines have been high and work towards the prevention of measles has been "intensified".

Health Minister David Clark said Tuesday that vaccination was the "best protection against this serious and highly infectious virus that spreads very easily from person to person".

He knows that his suffering three years ago could have been avoided if he received immunization, and he is concerned about the dozens of children in Washington state where a measles outbreak began earlier this year.

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