More confirmed measles cases in Auckland

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How can we protect ourselves from Measles outbreak?In Oakland County (a suburb of Detroit), there are 39 confirmed cases of the measles.

There are now four cases of measles linked to the Mount Maunganui area.

The bulk of the cases are reported from Oakland County, while one case each has been confirmed in Washtenaw and Wayne counties.

Exposure locations are not yet available for the Washtenaw County case and will be provided as more information is learned at washtenaw.org/health.

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Measles is a highly infectious viral illness and is spread from person to person through the air by breathing, sneezing or coughing.

All the Bay of Plenty cases occurred over the past three weeks, a Toi Te Ora Public Health pānui said.

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If you have not been vaccinated for the measles, health authorities are urging you to contact your local health department or your doctor's office to ask about getting the vaccine. Back in the mid-20th century, measles cases in the United States numbered in the hundreds of thousands per year, but, by 1970, the disease had been almost eradicated thanks to the introduction of a vaccine for it.

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"It's important that parents ensure that their children receive their free routine MMR immunisations on time at 15 months and four years of age", says Dr Jim Miller, Medical Officer of Health for Toi Te Ora Public Health. It can be effective when given within 72 hours of exposure to prevent illness.

People born before January 1, 1969 are likely to be immune because measles used to be quite common and so this older age group did not need measles immunisation.

What are the symptoms of measles?

A rash that is red, raised, blotchy; usually starts on face, spreads to trunk, arms, and legs 3-5 days after symptoms begin.

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