Passengers exposed to measles on two Jetstar flights

Passengers on two domestic Jetstar flights last week may have been exposed to measles.

The Canterbury District Health Board has issued a release confirming a passenger with measles travelled while infectious on June 6 and 8.

"A passenger arriving in Christchurch on Jetstar Flight number JQ237 from Auckland on June 6 has been confirmed as having measles. While still infectious, they also flew back to Auckland on flight JQ236 on June 8," the release said.

"This person travelled while infectious, and the Canterbury Community and Public Health team wants to alert all passengers and crew on this flight that they have been exposed to measles."

Anyone who travelled on these flights and isn't sure they have been fully immunised should check their immunisation status with their doctor.

You are only fully protected if you have had two doses of the MMR vaccine, had clinically confirmed measles, or if you were born before 1969, the release said.

Any passenger or crew on JQ237 on the June 6 or on JQ236 on June 8 who is not fully protected should stay at home and remain isolated until June 22.

Dr Alistair Humphrey said this means staying home from school or work and having no contact with unimmunised people.

Anyone who becomes unwell with the follow symptoms over the next week should phone their doctor for advice:

• A respiratory type of illness with dry cough, runny nose, headache,
• Temperature over 38.5C and feeling very unwell,
• A red blotchy rash starts on day 4-5 of the illness usually on the face and moves to the chest and arms.

At risk passengers from these flights should not go to their general practice or to the hospital unless it is an emergency or they are advised to do so by a doctor or nurse.

Yesterday it was also announced that health authorities want all babies in Auckland to get their first measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) shot at 12 months instead of 15 months, as the measles outbreak continues to grow.

The change is being made immediately as the number of cases of measles in Auckland hits 104, with 43 per cent of victims aged under 5. Babies are extremely vulnerable to measles, which is highly infectious and potentially fatal.

Primary care providers are also being asked to recall all under-5s who have missed their first MMR vaccine to make sure they get the shots.

There are currently no changes to the vaccination schedule for other parts of New Zealand.

Anyone else up to 50 with no record of vaccination is also encouraged to get their shots.

The MMR vaccination is free for eligible people (although GP practices may charge an administration fee). Those over 50 are considered immune as they will have been exposed to the disease during their childhood.


"Passengers exposed to measles on two Jetstar flights"
"Passengers on two domestic Jetstar flights last week may have been exposed to measles".
Have been or MAY have been, which is it?.