Measles in Canterbury now 'in widespread circulation' as infections rise to 25

Measles outbreak in New Zealand's Canterbury widens to 20

New Zealand measles outbreak sparks delivery of thousands of MMR vaccines to South Island

The Jefferson County Health Department began investigating a case of measles on Friday.

As per the CDC, which is the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, one dose of one particular vaccine called as the MMR vaccine is said to be nearly 93% effective and if two doses are taken, then the effectiveness is increased by nearly 4% thus making it nearly 97% effective, which is incredible. If people are uncertain if they had two vaccine doses or the disease they should contact their GP. Many of this year's cases stem from an outbreak in Washington state, and almost all of those involve children who weren't vaccinated against the disease.

Next week, an additional 18,000 vaccines will be delivered and there will be thousands more shipped in the following week. For context, in our study of New Zealand cases from 2007 to 2014 we found approximately 83% (955 of 1154 cases) were unvaccinated and fewer than 13% cases (145 of 1154) had one vaccine.

"This is just another strong message, people can not rely on others being immunised to protect them".

How strong is the measles virus? There are no new locations where people may have been exposed to measles. Once outside of people the virus, an RNA virus, is not that stable, but it may still last for a couple of hours and that is long enough to infect people without direct contact.

"To maintain herd immunity, communities have to vaccinate enough residents to protect the small number of people who can not receive a vaccination for medical reasons", said Ashley Franks, Erie County Health Department epidemiologist.

Are certain people or communities more at risk?

In fact, it's not really a surprise to see an outbreak of mumps or measles. This means that typically children are most at risk.

New Zealand's Ministry of Health said in a statement that since 2012, all cases of measles in the country came from overseas.

Colvin said about one in four people throughout the United States who get the measles will be hospitalized and one out of every 1,000 measles patients will develop brain swelling which could lead to brain damage.

In addition to the cases in Washington there are ongoing measles outbreaks in New York, Texas and IL, according to the CDC.

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