- Begins vaccination against measles
Ohio Franklin County Public Health has raised alarm on rising cases of Measles in the County for the first time in almost 20 years.
“Many of the cases have a history of recent travel to Kenya,” the Assistant Health Commissioner Director of Prevention and Wellness Alexandra Jones said in an email to the New Americans magazine.
“We have several confirmed cases that have local, community transmission which, as a health department, we’re concerned could lead to further spread throughout our communities.”
Alexandra Jones said, “all of these individuals had not been vaccinated against measles (MMR vaccine),” adding that resources have been provided “to promote the importance and benefits of Measles vaccination.”
“We are working on developing a flyer for individuals who are traveling this holiday season to promote being up to date on vaccinations, especially MMR.”
Also, Alexandria Jones said, “We currently have several FAQ documents and hot cards regarding measles and information on how to get vaccinated in both Somali and English.”
Meanwhile, Columbus Public Health (CPH) and Franklin County Public Health (FCPH) are investigating a measles outbreak associated with a local child care facility.
Currently, there are four confirmed cases, all in unvaccinated children with no travel history. The child care facility is cooperating, has notified parents, and has temporarily closed down.
CPH and FCPH are conducting case investigations and contact tracing on the four cases.
“We are working diligently with the cases to identify any potential exposures and to notify people who were exposed,” said Columbus Public Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts.
“The most important thing you can do to protect against measles is to get vaccinated with the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, which is safe and highly effective.”
With the risk for community spread, parents are encouraged to make sure their children are up to date on their childhood immunizations, including the MMR vaccine.
Ninety percent of unvaccinated individuals who are exposed to measles will become infected. About one in five people in the U.S. who get measles will be hospitalized.
“Measles is both highly contagious and preventable,” said Joe Mazzola, Franklin County Health Commissioner.
“It can be a severe illness, so we strongly encourage anyone who has not been vaccinated to get vaccinated to prevent further spread.”
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