One case of measles confirmed in Bell County

Faith Castro
February 8, 2019

The Texas cases follow dozens in Washington state, where 49 confirmed cases turned up last month.

Immunization and vitamin A supplementation of 9-month-old children are the best defenses against measles, the DOH said.

The Bell County Public Health District said they can confirm a possible measles case in a child in Western Bell County on Monday.

Recently, Fort Worth, Plano, Houston and Austin were singled out as anti-vaccine "hotspots" because a number of Texas families are opting out of vaccines, according to a study in PLOS Medicine.

Fifty-one of the confirmed measles cases are in southwest Washington, one is in the Seattle area and four are in the Portland, Oregon, metropolitan area.

Beckham said new cases of measles are becoming more common than before, saying the last time they had a confirmed case was past year.

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The Center has reported three outbreaks; the outbreaks are associated with travelers, who "brought measles back from Israel and Ukraine". The identities of the patients have not been released by DSHS, but the health department said the children were either too young to be vaccinated or had not completed the two-part vaccination series. As a highly contagious infection, measles can live in an airspace where an infected person was for up to two hours.

Since measles is no longer endemic (constantly present) in the United States, how are these outbreaks occurring?

Officials declined to say how old the person is or give any other identifying information, but they are contacting people who may have been exposed. "In a sense, we already saw that in 2018, but it looks like cases may pick up more in 2019".

But it's a snapshot of the scare an outbreak can cause, said Dr. Alan Melnick, the Clark County health officer overseeing the response.

Measles vaccines are reported to be very effective, protecting people 97 percent of the time after 2 doses.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children get two doses in order to be fully protected.

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