Sudden outbreak of measles prompts emergency declaration, renews vaccination debate


Measles is still a big problem in other parts of the world, and travelers infected overseas can bring back the virus, causing periodic outbreaks.

If someone believes they have measles they should stay at home and avoid contact with other people, especially vulnerable individuals like babies or the elderly. If you are not sure if you are immune to measles, you can get a blood test to find out.

Before the measles vaccination program started in 1963, more than three million people got measles each year in the United States - of those, more than 400 died. In its new year message for 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) cited vaccine hesitancy as one of the world's top 10 global health threats, alongside air pollution and climate change, noncommunicable diseases, global influenza pandemic, and dengue, among others.

The measles vaccine - known as the MMR vaccine - is very effective.

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A vast majority of those who came down with measles - 41 - were not vaccinated against the disease, Clark County officials said. It starts with a fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes and sore throat, and is followed by a blotchy rash. An additional case was confirmed in King County, which includes Seattle, and in Multnomah County, Oregon, which includes Portland and lies across the Columbia River from Clark County.

According to the Mayo Clinic, people who are unvaccinated, travel to developing countries or have a vitamin A deficiency are more likely to catch the measles.

NY is experiencing a measles outbreak within observant Jewish communities stemming from travel to Israel.

People may have been exposed to the unsafe disease at more than three dozen locations, many in neighboring OR, such as Portland International Airport and the Moda Center, home to the Portland Trail Blazers.

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Incubation for measles is usually 7 to 21 days. A lot of them were children under 5. Doctors say one dose of the MMR [measles, mumps, rubela] vaccine is about 93 percent effective. However, there are still means to regain the momentum to continue and strongly support the routine immunization of children to protect them from acquiring vaccine-preventable diseases.

"Only about 3 percent of the time do those vaccines fail".

Washington and OR are among 17 states that allow some type of non-medical exemption for vaccines for "personal, moral OR other beliefs", according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

A child who received only one dose of the measles vaccine is the newest person diagnosed with the disease, according to a Friday update from Clark County Public Health.

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