The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) announced a case of measles was confirmed after a Korean in their 40s who boarded the same aircraft as a measles confirmed person while traveling abroad.
Previously, health officials were notified by the Spanish government that “on December 18, 2022, a confirmed case of measles occurred among passengers on a flight from Doha, Qatar to Barcelona, Spain, and 21 Koreans were on board the same flight”. 13 out of 21 returned home (as of January 2, 2023).
The measles positive patient, who returned to Korea on December 29 (QR858 Doha → Incheon), developed rash symptoms from the 31st, and as a result of a respiratory sample test, it was confirmed as measles on January 2, 2023.
Officials report the patient is in good condition and is being treated at home.
This confirmed case of measles is the first imported measles case in Korea in about three years since February 2020.
In Korea, the measles vaccination rate for children (MMR 1st 97.1%, 2nd 95.0%) is high.
To protect infants and young children from measles infection, it was requested that children be vaccinated in a timely manner according to the standard measles vaccination schedule– Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR) vaccination x2–1st: 12-15 months after birth, 2nd: 4-6 years of age.
Meanwhile, as measles has recently occurred worldwide, the risk of measles infection is gradually increasing for travelers who have not received the measles preventive vaccine (MMR) and those with weakened immunity among travelers in the affected areas.
Therefore, since the possibility of influx of patients is increasing, if you plan to travel to a measles outbreak area, make sure that you have received both doses of the measles vaccine (MMR) before travel.
If the 2nd dose of inoculation has not been completed, or if it is unclear whether or not the vaccination has been administered, the 2nd dose of inoculation (at least 4 weeks apart) must be completed 4-6 weeks before departure.
However, in the case of infants aged 6 to 11 months before reaching the standard vaccination schedule (12 months after birth), one dose is given first, and additional vaccinations are added at the standard vaccination schedules of 12 to 15 months and 4 to 6 years of age. Vaccination is recommended.
In addition, to prevent infection while traveling, strictly observe personal hygiene such as washing hands and observing cough etiquette.
If symptoms of measles (incubation period of 7 to 21 days) appear after travel (e.g. rash with fever), refrain from using public transportation as much as possible, minimize contact with others after wearing a mask, and call the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1339) and ask to visit a medical institution according to the instructions.
In particular, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strongly recommends that health care workers, such as medical personnel who are likely to come into contact with measles patients, receive 2 doses of MMR (at least 4 weeks apart) if they do not have vaccination history and measles antibodies according to the guidelines. ,
Health care workers and medical institution employees are at high risk of exposure to measles during a measles epidemic and high risk of spreading the infection to patients in medical institutions.