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Ukraine measles outbreak prompts CDC travel notice

A measles outbreak has been reported by health officials in Ukraine. The most recent data in 2017 shows that as of the end of July, Ukraine has reported 1,386 cases of measles, compared to 10 cases in the same period in 2016. Most cases of measles were reported in the Ivano-Frankivsk (637) and Odessa regions (526).

As reported earlier this year, only 45 percent of children in Ukraine were vaccinated against measles in 2016.

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The outbreak has prompted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to issue a travel notice for Ukraine.

CDC recommends that travelers to Ukraine protect themselves by making sure they are vaccinated against measles. Getting measles vaccine is particularly important for infants 6–11 months of age (1 dose of measles vaccine) and children 1 year of age or older (2 doses of measles vaccine). Clinicians should keep measles in mind when treating patients with fever and rash, especially if the patient has recently traveled internationally.

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In addition to ensuring vaccines are up to date, they recommend frequent handwashing and avoid touching your mouth, nose, or eyes.

Measles is a disease caused by a virus that is spread through the air by breathing, coughing, or sneezing. Measles virus is highly contagious and can remain so for up to 2 hours in the air or on surfaces. Symptoms of measles are rash, high fever, cough, runny nose, and red, watery eyes.

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