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Health Department issues measles warning

Measles vaccination reminder issued.

The public was warned today to check their measles vaccinations are up-to-date, especially if they have plans to travel this summer.

The Department of Health said measles had returned to some areas of the world because people are under-vaccinated or unvaccinated.

The World Health Organisation reported the disease rebounded in Europe last with 22,000 cases reported and more than 11,000 cases in January and February of 2018 after a record low in 2016.

The WHO also said that 11 countries including Canada, the USA and countries in South America, had 1,685 confirmed cases of measles in the first months of 2018.

Measles is a highly contagious virus that can live in the nose and throat mucus of an infected person.

It can spread through coughing and sneezing and droplets can stay airborne for up to two hours.

Up to 90 per cent of people close to an infected person who are not immune will also catch the disease.

Measles can cause serious health problems including pneumonia, blindness, and inflammation of the brain and is particularly dangerous in children aged under five.

The Department of Health said people should make vaccinations are up to date for themselves and any children.

People can get MMR vaccine at their doctor’s office or the Adult Immunisation and Travel Health clinics at the Department of Health.

People who go to the Travel Health Clinic should visit www.gov.bm/health-clinics-bermuda to download the trip planning questionnaire.

Vaccines are country-specific and should be booked at least six weeks before departure.

More information about immunisation can be found at www.gov.bm/immunization-schedules-children-and-adults