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New IPU measles case identified

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One new measles case has been identified at the IPU in Palmerston North, bringing the total number of confirmed cases for the current outbreak to seven.

Medical Officer of Health, Dr Rob Weir said: “Contacts of the new case have been identified and placed in isolation.” 

Advice continues to be provided to IPU management and staff about the isolation process and how best to support those who need to be in isolation.

Control measures instituted at IPU in association with the first six cases, including the vaccination clinics that have been run at IPU and the isolation procedures put in place, have significantly reduced the number of people requiring isolation with this latest case. 

Measles is a very infectious disease so anyone who is not immune to measles is at risk if they come in to contact with the disease. It spreads from person to person through the air from breathing, coughing and sneezing, and contact with those secretions. The disease is contagious from just before symptoms begin until about five days after onset of the rash. The illness usually starts between 10 and 14 days after contact with the measles virus.”

Dr Weir said: “Once again thanks must go to all involved who have helped. This not only includes the staff and students at IPU, but also the public health, Central PHO, MedLab Central and wider support team here at MidCentral DHB.”

Measles symptoms include: fever, runny nose, cough, and sore red eyes. After 3-5 days a rash appears on the head and spreads down the body. It’s important that if you think you have measles to contact your GP (by phone first) or Healthline on 0800 611 116 for more advice.

Contact: Communications Unit (06) 350-8945

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