Confirmed measles cases in Cork (Airport, City, and Mitchelstown), and Clonmel, Co Tipperary- updates - August 2016

 

Tuesday 23rd August 2016

HSE wishes to alert the public that additional measles cases, linked to the ongoing measles outbreak, have been notified to the Departments of Public Health in Cork and Tipperary during the past week.

Investigation and control activities are being implemented by the local Departments of Public Health in the HSE South and South East, to identify those who may have been exposed to prevent further transmission, and to ensure people are aware of the risk.

Dr Kevin Kelleher, Consultant in Public Health reminds the public and clinicians that measles can occur among non-immune individuals who may not realise that they have been exposed to measles. “Measles is highly infectious and is spread easily, and there is a high chance that individuals who have not been fully vaccinated with two doses of MMR vaccine will develop measles if they are exposed. The time between exposure to measles virus and developing measles rash is normally 14 days (range 7-21 days).  People are infectious from 4 days before the rash starts until 4 days after. If infectious cases are isolated early, the risk of transmission to vulnerable individuals decreases”. 

 

Those who may be at risk of getting measles include anyone who did not have measles in the past and those who are not fully vaccinated with two doses of MMR vaccine. Babies (younger than 12 months and too young to be vaccinated as part of routine programme), non-immune pregnant women, and those with weakened immune systems are most vulnerable if exposed. 

 

The following areas have been identified as places where measles cases were while infectious:

 

Public place(s) where members of the public may have been exposed to person with confirmed measles

When 

HSE South

Cork City /airport

 

Cork airport

  • 13th August – night- after 23:00 hours

Bus from Cork Airport – Cork City Bus Station, Parnell Place, Cork

  • 13th August – night

Mitchelstown, Co Cork

 

Supervalu, New Square, Mitchelstown

  • 25thJuly (afternoon/early evening)
  • 27th July (afternoon and evening)

HSE Southeast Clonmel, Co Tipperary

 

Clonmel town, Co. Tipperary

 

 

South Tipperary General Hospital, Clonmel, Co Tipperary

 

JJ Kavanagh Bus (Clonmel - Dublin - Clonmel route)

  • 23-24 July, and
  • 30 July-3 Aug

August bank holiday weekend

  • 29th July (late morning, afternoon and evening) and
  • 1st August (late morning, afternoon and evening)
  • AND
  • 5th - 8th August (8.30am - 8pm)
  • 30th July (Clonmel to Dublin) departing at 14:30 hours
  • 31st July (Dublin to Clonmel), departing at 17:45 hours

 

As it may not be possible to specifically identify all those who have been exposed, the HSE is seeking to highlight the signs and symptoms of measles. 

  • Symptoms usually appear about 10 days after exposure with irritability, a runny nose, conjunctivitis (red eyes), a cough and an increasing fever that comes and goes.  These symptoms usually last 2-4 days and can be mistaken for a cold.
  • A measles rash usually appears about four days after the early symptoms.  The rash typically starts on the forehead and spreads downwards, over the face, neck and body.  The rash consists of flat red or brown blotches, which can flow into each other.  It lasts about 4-7 days. Symptoms may also include diarrhoea, vomiting and abdominal pain.

 

Recommendations          

  • The best way to protect against measles is to get the MMR vaccine.
  • Any adult born since 1978 should have received two doses of MMR to prevent measles, if not, they may be at risk.
  • In the outbreak area, people born since 1978 who do not have vaccination records to confirm MMR vaccination (and never had measles infection) should speak with their GP about getting vaccinated with the MMR vaccine, which is free of charge, as soon as possible.
  • MMR is routinely given to all children at 12 months of age with the second dose at 4-5 years of age, but it can be given at other ages, as necessary
  • Any child who missed their scheduled MMR vaccine dose should contact their GP to get the age appropriate dose
  • Being up-to-date on vaccinations before travel  is as important as passport, tickets and money

 

If anyone develops measles symptoms, they should 

•                      Stay at home and phone their GP

•                      Tell the doctor or nurse that they think they might have measles

•                      Stop visitors coming to the house to prevent spreading the infection

 

Measles is a notifiable disease and GPs and hospital clinicians should immediately notify their local Public Health Department if they suspect someone has measles.

 

Last updated on: 15 / 08 / 2016