The Arizona Department of Health Services and the Pima County Public Health Department announced earlier this month that a 12-month-old infant from Pima County has been diagnosed with measles. The confirmed case is in a person with Asia-related travel. The Pima County Public Health Department and ADHS are currently investigating to learn if there was any community exposure to the disease.
“We are working with our healthcare and public health partners to make sure we quickly identify any possible exposures to the community that may have occurred,” said Marcy Flanagan, Director of the Pima County Health Department, in a release. “As more and more cities and counties across the United States experience cases of vaccine preventable diseases like measles, we are working hard to prevent that from happening in Pima County.”
According to a press release issued by Pima County, measles spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Measles symptoms appear seven to 12 days after exposure but may take up to 21 days to appear. It begins with fever (101 F or higher), red, watery eyes, cough and runny nose and is followed by a rash that is red, raised, and blotchy. The rash begins on the face at the hairline and moves down the body and may last five to six days.
Measles can be prevented with the MMR vaccine. The vaccine protects against three diseases: measles, mumps and rubella. The CDC recommends children get two doses of MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 through 15 months of age and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age. Teens and adults should also be up to date on their MMR vaccination. The MMR vaccine is very safe and effective.
For information about measles, visit the Arizona Department of Health Services’ website at azhealth.gov/measles.