VANCOUVER, Washington – Health officials say there are 43 confirmed cases of measles in the Clark County outbreak, including one who has one dose of MMR vaccine.
Authorities say they also look at 8 suspected cases of the virus.
Clark County Public Health said most of the patients were children under 10, ten cases included children aged 11 to 18, and one case was an adult between 19 and 29 years of age.
Of the cases, 37 people were not immunized and five cases were not tested for vaccination. One patient received one of two doses of the MMR vaccine.
The CDC says one dose of the MMR vaccine is 93 percent effective, while two doses of vaccine are 97 percent effective.
Children usually receive the first MMR vaccine from one year to 15 months and the second from 4 to 6 years of age.
Patients have visited several public places while they are infected – including the Portland International Airport and the Fashion Center – and could expose thousands of other people to the virus. | FULL LIST OF EXHIBITION SITES
"Measles can be so contagious that you may be in a room, and if you are susceptible, two hours after someone with measles has left and you still get the disease," says Dr. Alan Melnik, Director of Public Health Clark County,
Symptoms of measles start with light fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes followed by a rash.
If you or your child have gone to any of the possible exposure sites and show signs of measles, call your health care provider before coming in order to restrict someone else's exposure to the waiting room.
Residents of Oregon can visit the Oregon Health Authority website to find out if they are vaccinated.
"Most people are immunized, but again measles have a way to find people who are not. This is the most contagious human disease we know about," said Dr. Paul Lewis of the Maltoma County Health Authority.
Dr. Lewis says that if you have a child under 1 year of age that you are concerned about, you can talk to your healthcare provider about early vaccination. You should also check with any childcare facility your child visits to make sure they require their workers to keep pace with immunizations.
If you have any further questions about measles, contact your local healthcare department:
- Public Health of Clark County: (360) 397-8021
- Public Health of Klaqamas County: (503) 655-8411
- Public Health of County Multnomah: (503) 988-3406
- Washington Public Health: (503) 846-3594