Ohio Measles Outbreak Sickens Nearly 60 Children
Local authorities said none of the children had been fully vaccinated against measles, and 23 of them were hospitalized.
''Measles can be a very serious illness, especially for children under the age of five,'' Columbus Public Health spokeswoman Kelly Newman told CNN.
Most of the infected children are under the age of 5, and 12 of them are under the age of 1. ''Many children are hospitalized because of dehydration,'' Newman told CNN in an email. ''Other serious complications include neurological conditions such as pneumonia and encephalitis. “There is no way to know if an individual will get sick enough to require hospitalization.The surest way to protect children from measles is to ensure they are vaccinated against MMR.”
Of her 59 children who were infected, 56 were unvaccinated and 3 were partially vaccinated. According to the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics, the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine is recommended for children 12 months and older. Two doses are required to be considered fully vaccinated, with the second dose usually given between the ages of 4 and 6.
Measles ''is one of the most contagious pathogens known to mankind,'' said the Academy.
The CDC explains that it is so contagious that nine of her 10 people around the person can become infected if they are not protected. Measles infection causes a rash and fever that can exceed 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Occasionally, the disease can cause brain swelling, brain damage, or death. Last month, the World Health Organization and CDC warned that 40 million children worldwide will not be vaccinated against measles in 2021. The American Academy of Pediatrics also notes that many parents choose not to vaccinate their children because of misinformation.
Infants are at higher risk because they are too young to be vaccinated.
The Academy offers the following tips for protecting unvaccinated infants during a measles outbreak.
• Limit contact with crowds, other children, and people with cold symptoms.
• Disinfect items and surfaces in your home regularly, as the measles virus can survive her two hours on surfaces or become airborne. • If possible, breastfeed your baby because breast milk contains antibodies to prevent and fight infections.
26 Dec 2022