Measles Outbreak in Michigan
The state of Michigan, among other states, are experiencing a measles outbreak. There are no cases in our district at this time, but community health care officials are urging residents to make sure they and their children have been vaccinated.
Measles-What is it?
Measles is a highly contagious virus that spreads through the air when an infected person breathes, coughs or sneezes. The virus can live up to two hours in the air. Measles is so contagious that if someone has it, nearly everyone close to that person will also get the disease-unless they have been vaccinated or are immune. A person is considered immune if they have had the disease, are fully vaccinated or were born before 1957 (Western Upper Peninsula Health Department, 2019).
Symptoms usually appear 7 to 14 days after exposure and can include:
- High fever (may spike to over 104 degrees F)
- Runny Nose
- Red, watery eyes
- Tiny white spots on the inner cheeks, gums and roof of mouth
- A red, raised and blotchy rash that starts 3 to 5 days after other symptoms begin
(Western Upper Peninsula Health Department, 2019)
How can you protect yourself and/or your children?
Vaccination is the best defense-Measles can be prevented with the MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) vaccine. Learn more about the MMR Vaccine here.
If you plan on traveling, it’s best to educate yourself on safe travel practices:
- What can travelers do to prevent measles?
- Air Travel-connecting through Chicago O’Hare International Airport