Second case of measles in Queenstown

A second measles case has been confirmed in Queenstown.

In a statement the Southern District Health Board said a Queenstown resident was confirmed to have had measles.

They were infectious with measles while at the following locations: The Remarkables ski area, and in particular Kea Club lessons, from August 14-16, at Frankton McDonalds at lunchtime on August 16, Mitre 10 Frankton, 4pm-4.15pm on August 18, Pak 'n Save from 4.15pm-5pm on August 18, and Macpac Frankton from 5pm-5.30pm on August 18.

It follows the first confirmed case, announced last week, of a visitor to the resort being infectious.

Southern DHB locum medical officer of health Dr Greg Simmons urged anyone who was not sure if they were immune to measles, and may have been in contact with the case, to check their immunity.

The best way to do that was to look at the immunisation page in your Well Child book.

If that was lost, try checking with the practice nurse at your regular general practice, which often keeps records of immunisations – even those done at previous practices.

“It usually takes 10 - 14 days for someone who has caught measles to develop symptoms. If anyone has been infected at the locations listed, they could start to develop symptoms from as soon as the today.

''Symptoms include a high fever, runny nose, cough and sore red eyes. A few days later a rash starts on the face and neck, before spreading to the rest of the body.''
Pregnant women, immunocompromised people, and people who have not had two MMRs should be especially vigilant.

"We're asking people who were in these locations to keep a close eye out for these symptoms. If you develop symptoms, stay home, and phone Healthline (0800 611 116) or your general practice, and let them know that you may have been in contact with a confirmed measles case," says Dr Simmons.

The measles virus spreads easily via infectious droplets from person to person through the air, via breathing, coughing and sneezing.

Those born before January 1 1969 are considered to be immune, as the virus circulated widely when they were children.

Vaccination with the Measles, Mumps, Rubella vaccine (MMR) offers the best protection against measles. Two doses will protect 99 per cent of people who have the vaccine. Children are routinely vaccinated against measles at 15 months and four years.

Anyone with measles needs to be isolated from the time they become ill until five days after the rash has appeared. Isolation means staying at home and missing out on things like school, work, sporting competitions and social events.

Dr Simmons said although it was important to get vaccines on time, every time, it was never too late.
For more information on measles, visit the Ministry of Health website. 

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