As of Friday, March 7th, there have been a total of 16 confirmed cases of measles in northern Manhattan and the Bronx, according to the New York City Health Department. These include seven adults and nine pediatric cases, which resulted in four hospitalizations. The Health Department urges all New Yorkers to make sure they and their children are vaccinated.
In order to prevent the spread of the virus, the NYC Health Department is urging pediatric-care facilities to identify all children who have not received the MMR vaccine and administer it to them. Furthermore, if adults are unsure of their vaccination history, they should either be re-vaccinated or get a blood test to determine their vaccination status. This is especially important given that several adults in this outbreak were unsure of their vaccination status.
Measles typically begins with a rash on the face which then spreads to other parts of the body and may also be accompanied by cough, red eyes and runny nose. Individuals with the virus can transmit it through the air to others for four days preceding and following the development of the rash.
ACSH s Dr. Elizabeth Whelan says, This outbreak is just another wake-up call that it s imperative to be up to date on vaccinations. Parents of young children should follow the vaccination schedule issued by the CDC very closely, and older children and adults who have not received appropriate vaccinations should make sure to get them.