The New Jersey Department of Health is warning residents of additional exposures associated with an outbreak of measles— a highly contagious disease—in Ocean County.
A highly suspect case of measles associated with the Ocean County outbreak has potentially exposed individuals in Passaic County. This Passaic County resident could have exposed others to the infection while in Passaic County between November 17 and November 18.
In addition to the highly suspect case, a 15th case of measles has been confirmed in Ocean County. There are no known public exposures related to this individual.
Anyone who visited the following locations may have been exposed to the measles:
- Passaic Chill Youth Drop In Center, 217 Brook Ave., Passaic, NJ on November 17 between 8:30 p.m. and midnight
- Junior’s Kosher Deli, 215 Main Ave., Passaic, NJ 07055 on November 18 between 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.
- Rite Aid, 78 Main Ave., Passaic, NJ 07055 on November 18 between 8:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
The Department is working in collaboration with the Ocean County Health Department and City of Passaic Division of Health to identify and notify people who might have been exposed during the time the individuals were infectious.
The Department urges residents to remain vigilant for any symptoms of measles. Measles symptoms include rash, high fever, cough, runny nose and red, watery eyes. It can cause serious complications such as pneumonia and encephalitis (swelling of the brain). Measles infection in a pregnant woman can lead to miscarriage, premature birth or a low-birth-weight baby. Measles is easily spread through the air when someone coughs or sneezes. People can also get sick when they come in contact with mucus or saliva from an infected person.
The Department recommends that anyone who visited any of the locations listed above during the specified dates/times should contact a health provider immediately to discuss potential exposure and risk of developing the illness. If you have been exposed, you are at risk if you have not been vaccinated or have not had measles. Individuals potentially exposed, if infected, could develop symptoms as late as December 9.
Anyone who suspects an exposure is urged to call a health care provider before going to a medical office or emergency department. Special arrangements can be made for evaluation while also protecting other patients and medical staff from possible infection.
Anyone who has not been vaccinated or has not had measles is at risk if they are exposed. “Two doses of measles vaccine are about 97 percent effective in preventing measles,” said Dr. Christina Tan, state epidemiologist.
“We urge everyone to check to make sure they and their family members are up-to-date on measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine and all other age-appropriate immunizations. Getting vaccinated not only protects you, it protects others around you who are too young to get the vaccine or can’t receive it for medical reasons. If you’re planning an international trip, the World Health Organization recommends that adults or adolescents unsure of their immune status get a dose of measles vaccine before traveling,” Dr. Tan added.
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