Minnesota state health officials have reported two imported measles cases in recent weeks, both linked to international travel.


The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) reported the first case in early August. The 5-year-old child became ill in early August shortly after returning from international travel to a region where measles is common. The child was unvaccinated.

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Last week, health officials reported on a laboratory-confirmed measles in a 2 year-old traveler from Kenya. The case was not infectious during travel. The child had not received any doses of MMR vaccine.

Rash onset occurred on August 20, 2018. The case is considered infectious from August 16 through August 24, 2018. Secondary cases in Minnesota would be expected to have onset between August 23 and September 14.

Exposures mainly occurred in health care settings in Hennepin County. There is little risk of exposure to the general public.

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Health care providers are encouraged to be on high alert for measles amongst patients returning from recent international travel to endemic or outbreak areas (including Europe, Asia and Africa). Many families are now returning from summer vacations abroad.

Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. in 2000, but it is still common in other parts of the world. In a typical year, Minnesota sees one to four cases of measles, typically in people who traveled to countries where measles is more common.

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Last year, Minnesota experienced its largest measles outbreak since 1990, with 75 cases identified between April and August 2017. Of those cases, 21 were hospitalized and 91 percent were not vaccinated.