Measles Information from the Southern District Health Board

13/03/19

Information regarding Measles Outbreak March 2019
Two cases of measles have now been confirmed in Dunedin since 22 February, both of which are
linked to the current outbreak in Christchurch. One case was in contact with a local early childhood
service whilst infectious.
Public Health South is working with staff and parents at the affected service to ensure that any
unimmunised or vulnerable contacts are safe. This is a timely reminder to ensure that your children’s
vaccinations are up-to-date.
Measles is a highly infectious disease and is more serious than many people realise. Symptoms
include fever, cough, red eyes and a runny nose, and then a rash which develops after about 4 days.
About one in ten people with measles need to be hospitalised and 30% will develop complications.
The best measles prevention is two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine which is
free for all New Zealand children.
A child with measles should stay away from school or ECE services for five days from the appearance
of their rash or until recovered, depending on the advice of the Medical Officer of Health.
Unimmunised children who have been in contact with a measles case during the infectious stages
should be excluded from the school or ECE service. The child may need isolation for up to 14 days
after last contact with the infectious person. This includes exposed children who have only had one
MMR vaccination.
More Information
For further health information on measles please go to the Ministry of Health website
http://www.moh.govt.nz or the Immunisation Advisory Centre website http://www.immune.org.nz
You can also call the Immunisation Advisory Centre toll-free line 0800 IMMUNE (0800 466 863) for
advice.
Thank you for your support.
Yours sincerely,
Marion Poore
Medical Officer of Health
Public Health South
A Division of the Southern District Health Board

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