The Irish Health Service Executive (HSE) is now reporting 28 confirmed measles cases linked to the ongoing outbreak in the Mid-West region. The majority of these are in Limerick City. There is one associated case in Clare, one in Dublin and one in Galway, all linked to the Limerick outbreak. There are also a number of cases in the South East area, who are possibly linked to the Limerick outbreak.
Over two thirds of cases are aged between 15 and 50 years. As cases are continuing to occur the HSE is advising that adults who have not had measles infection in the past should ensure that they have had two doses of MMR vaccine. There is a risk of ongoing exposure especially for those whose work involves meeting large numbers of people e.g. people who work with children, people who work in healthcare, those who work in education, those working in public offices or public services and those who work in retail premises and those who attend healthcare premises either as patients or visitors..
Parents should also ensure that their children are up to date with their MMR vaccinations. Those due to sit exams should ensure they are vaccinated due to the potential disruption to their exams that measles infection could cause.
There was a 400% increase in the number of measles cases in Europe in 2017 compared with 2016. There are large ongoing outbreaks in the UK, France, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Greece, Portugal and Romania and across the world. Measles can be transmitted easily within the confined space of an airplane to people who are non-immune. MMR is especially important in those who are planning to travel abroad.
The HSE is providing a free MMR vaccination clinic (no appointment needed) in Barrack View Primary Care Centre, Edward Street, Limerick on Thursday 12th April, 3-4pm. Additionally for the duration of this outbreak MMR vaccination is free of charge to the public from GPs as the HSE is paying for the vaccine and for the GPs to give the vaccine.
- France’s Nouvelle-Aquitaine region facing measles epidemic situation
- Portugal measles cases top 100, eight out 10 are health professionals
- Romania measles update: 47th death being investigated