Mineola NY – The Nassau County Department of Health (NCDOH) has been notified of a second laboratory confirmed a case of measles in an adult this year. This individual may be associated with a current measles case in Nassau County. NCDOH, in collaboration with the New York State Department of Health is investigating this case and will take appropriate action based on the findings.
Measles is a serious respiratory disease that causes a rash and fever. It is very contagious. You can catch it just by being in a room where someone with measles coughed or sneezed. People usually develop a fever, then may have a cough, runny nose and watery eyes, followed by appearance of a rash. People are considered infectious from four days before to four days after the appearance of the rash. Symptoms usually appear 10-12 days after exposure but may appear as early as 7 days and as late as 21 days after exposure.
NCDOH is thoroughly investigating this case and has determined there is potential exposure to the public. Anyone who visited the following locations may have been exposed to measles:
These times reflect the period that the infected individual was in the identified areas and a two-hour period after they left those areas, because the virus remains alive in air and on surfaces for up to two hours. To prevent the spread of illness, NCDOH is advising individuals who may have been exposed and who have symptoms consistent with measles to contact their health care provider, a local clinic, or a local emergency department before going for care. This will help to prevent others at these facilities from being exposed to the illness. The following are considered high-risk groups for contracting measles:
Individuals are considered protected or immune to measles if they were born before 1957, have received two doses of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine, have had measles disease, or have a lab test confirming immunity.
The single best way to prevent measles is to be vaccinated. Individuals should receive two doses of MMR vaccine to be fully protected. If a person is unsure if they are immune they should contact their healthcare provider. Typically, the first dose of MMR vaccine should be given at 12-15 months of age and the second dose should be given at four to six years of age (age of school entry), although individuals may also be vaccinated later in life. In New York State, measles immunization is required of children enrolled in schools, daycare, and pre-kindergarten. Since August 1990, college students have also been required to demonstrate immunity against measles.
For families traveling overseas, a baby between the ages of 6 through 11 months old should receive one dose of MMR vaccine before leaving. If a child is 12 months of age or older, he or she will need two doses of MMR vaccine – separated by at least 28 days – before departure.
For additional information about measles, visit https://www.health.ny.gov/publications/2170/