More measles cases have been reported in Dublin and Meath, according to Ireland health officials.

Ireland map/CIA
Ireland map/CIA

The Health Service Executive (HSE) has confirmed that there are now 17 confirmed cases of measles.  There are 12 confirmed cases in Dublin with most cases in North Dublin and a smaller outbreak of measles in Meath with five confirmed cases.

Children and adults have been affected and measles is now circulating in the community in Dublin and Meath.  Dr. Deirdre Mulholland, Director of Public Health for HSE East, said “measles can be a serious illness and is highly contagious.  The best protection is to be fully vaccinated with two doses of MMR vaccine.”  The HSE advises that everyone should be aware of the possible risk of spread of measles whenever groups of people gather and particularly when attending healthcare services such as GPs or Emergency Departments.

The Measles Outbreak Control Team continues to investigate measles cases and has repeated the following advice on the measures to control the further spread of this potentially serious illness:

MMR vaccination measures

  1. All children should get the MMR vaccine when they are aged 12 months. If any child aged over 12 months has missed this vaccine they should get it now from their General Practitioner (GP).
  2. All children should get a second dose of MMR vaccine when they are 4-5 years old or in Junior Infants at school. If any child in Senior Infants or older has missed this vaccine they should get it now from their GP.
  3. Adults under 40 years who have not had measles or have not received 2 doses of MMR vaccine should contact their GP to get the MMR vaccine.

Measures to prevent the spread of measles if you think you may have measles:

  1. Do not go to work, school or crèche.
  2. Stay at home and phone your GP.  Tell the doctor or nurse that you think you might have measles.
  3. Stop visitors coming to the house to prevent the spread of measles.
  4. Pregnant women who have been exposed to measles should seek medical advice as soon as possible.