Measles is uncommon in the United States because it has been eliminated more than a decade ago, and most people have been vaccinated from it. However, for those who haven’t received the vaccine, the virus is highly contagious, and symptoms could become highly severe. How contagious, you may ask? You can get the measles just by walking into an area where an infected person has been in the past few hours.
According to a King County public health official, this may have happened recently, involving a boy with measles who was at the Sea-Tac airport while his illness was at a contagious stage. Glenn Farley of King 5 News provides more information on the incident.
The Seattle-King County health department says a child who apparently was exposed to measles while overseas was infectious at Sea-Tac Airport the evening of May 26.
Health officials say unvaccinated people could have been exposed to the contagious disease if they were at Concourse A and baggage claim that day between 6:20 p.m. and 10 p.m.
Those people should call a health care provider if they develop a fever and rash in the next two weeks.
According to Public Health of Seattle & King County, the case is the third so far this year coming through Sea-Tac airport. Statewide, this is the 16th confirmed case so far this year, according to the Washington State Department of Health.
Measles is an airborne disease that causes red watery eyes, fever, cough, and rash. Symptoms begin between seven to 21 days after exposure. The contagious period is usually between the four days leading to and four days after the appearance of rash.
If you have been in contact with an infected person or have been at a location where measles was detected, find out if you have been vaccinated for measles or have previously had measles to ensure your immunity. People who have yet to be vaccinated would be well-advised to go to a nearby healthcare provider, such as U.S. HealthWorks Medical Group’s facility for occupational medicine and Georgetown urgent care, to help safeguard their health.
In addition, if you develop symptoms of measles, contact a healthcare provider immediately. Know that if you get sick, your health and those of your loved ones around you are at risk.
Measles Vaccination Schedule
For measles vaccination, children should visit the urgent care in Georgetown Seattle to be vaccinated with two doses of the Measles Mumps Rubella (MMR) vaccine. Adults should have at least one dose, but two doses are recommended for international travelers, college/university/trade school students, and healthcare workers.
(Source: Child with measles was at Sea-Tac Airport, King 5 News, Jun. 2, 2014)