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Measles Update

posted May 5, 2016, 3:38 PM by Reception @TMCS

Waikato District Health Board have recently had confirmed cases of measles in the Waikato Region.

Measles is a highly infectious viral disease that can be serious.  It is spread from person to person through the air by breathing, sneezing or coughing.  Just being in the same room as someone with measles can lead to infection if you are not immune.

The first symptoms of measles are a fever, and one or more of a runny nose, cough and sore red eyes.  After a few days a red blotchy rash comes on and lasts up to one week.  The rash usually starts on the face and spreads to the rest of the body.  Measles can be very serious.

Students with measles are infectious from 5 days before to 5 days after the onset of rash and must stay away from school and follow the advice of the local Medical Officer of Health.

What if there is a confirmed case of measles at our school?

If the Waikato District Health Board advise us of a confirmed case of measles at our school, we will take the following action:

Students who can stay at school:

  • Students who have provided us with an Immunisation Certificate showing evidence of the 2 MMR or measles vaccines  are considered immune.

Students who have to be off school in quarantine:

  • Students who have not been fully immunised (i.e. not had both MMR vaccines or the measles vaccine),or those with no immunity to measles, and who have been in close contact with a measles case during the infectious stages must stay away from school/preschool for 14 days from their last contact at the direction of the local Medical Officer of Health.

  • If your child has only had one documented MMR vaccine then they can have their second MMR vaccine (as long as greater than one month from the first) and immediately return to school.

What do you need to do today?

  • Ensure your child is up to date with their immunisations.

  • If your child is not fully immunised and thus is not immune, it is important to be aware of the symptoms of measles.  The early symptoms of measles are fever, runny nose, sore red eyes and cough.

If your child develops symptoms of measles:

  • Phone your GP or call Healthline on 0800 611 116 for advice or seek medical attention depending on the severity of illness.  It is important to call first because measles is highly infectious and people with measles can affect others in the waiting room.

  • Stay at home and away from public places (such as sports events, gatherings, parties, school, work, child care, shopping centres, public transport etc).