Measles cases reported in several Houston-area communities

Maricruz Casares
Febrero 7, 2019

The Pacific Northwest outbreak includes one confirmed case in King County, where Seattle is located, and four in Multnomah County, which includes Portland, Oregon. At this time, this case has not been linked to any other measles cases. Three of those suspected cases were unvaccinated and received the vaccine after 72 hours after exposure.

Outbreaks, or clusters, of measles cases are typically due to exposure in foreign countries that do not have the same robust vaccination programs as the United States, Espinoza said.

"During an outbreak is when you see an influx of patients who would otherwise be vaccine-hesitant", said Virginia Ramos, infection-control nurse with Sea Mar Community Health Center, which runs six sites that offer vaccines in Clark County.

The Multnomah County health department said Wednesday that the three new cases were in close contact with a person who tested positive for measles a week and a half ago. 1-2 people out of every 1,000 who become infected with measles will die. That includes attending church by video feed and working with employers.

However, measles is highly contagious.

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Washington now has a sufficient supply of MMR vaccine for children and adults; however, as the outbreak continues, vaccine supply may be affected.

"To investigate to identify maybe where they went right away so that we can start notifying the public, you know, that these places you may have been exposed to measles", Christ said. One person had one dose of the vaccine, which is 93 percent effective.

Multnomah County officials have reported a steep uptick in vaccinations over this time past year. Measles vaccinations rose from 200 per day in January 2018 to 600 per day in January 2019.

According to WAC 246-105-030, measles is one of many diseases for which a child is required to be vaccinated against or show proof of immunity, before attending any school (public or private) or child care center.

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