By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
Health officials in Western Australia are advising the public in the Perth metropolitan area of the risk of measles following five confirmed measles cases in people who live in the Rockingham area.
Children and adults who have been inadvertently exposed are at risk of developing measles if they are not already immune. Individuals should remain vigilant for the onset of measles symptoms for the next three weeks if they are not immune to measles.
Acting Director of the Communicable Disease Control Directorate, Dr Paul Effler said that measles was a serious and highly contagious viral illness spread by tiny droplets released when infected people cough and sneeze.
“Every measles case is treated as a public health emergency because of the risk of local spread,” Dr Effler said.
“This includes those most vulnerable to infection, such as infants too young to be vaccinated, those with compromised immune systems and pregnant women who are not already immune through vaccination or previous infection.
“With high vaccination coverage, naturally occurring measles has been eliminated from WA for around 20 years but occasional cases and small outbreaks still occur – usually associated with tourists or WA residents who are infected overseas.”