Three confirmed cases of measles have been reported in Maryland, adding the state to the 2019 nationwide outbreak.
The Maryland Department of Health released a statement on April 17 confirming a third case of measles in the state. This officially brings the situation into an outbreak status according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Possible Exposure Sites
The Department of Health has identified three possible exposure sites in Pikesville, Maryland. Take note if you were in any of these places at the times listed below. If you were, you may have been exposed to the measles.
- 4000 Old Court Rd. in Pikesville on Sunday, April 14, from 10:30 a.m. till 1:30 p.m.
- Market Maven (1630 Reisterstown Rd., Pikesville) on Sunday, April 14. from 11:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
- Seven Mile Market (201 Reisterstown Rd., Pikesville) on Sunday, April 14, from 12:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
If you were in one of those three sites at the times listed, but you are healthy and up-to-date on your MMR vaccine (two doses), you do not need to take any further action.
If you were possibly exposed and are weakened due to illness or a compromised immune system (even if you have had two doses of MMR vaccine) OR if you are unsure if you have had two doses of MMR vaccine, call your doctor immediately and ask about immune globulin after explaining that you may have been exposed to measles.
Courtesy of the CDC
How Measles Spread, and Symptoms to Watch For
Measles can be transmitted through coughing, sneezing, and contact with mouth secretions to unvaccinated individuals. It is important to note that the measles virus can survive in an airborne state for up to two hours after the transmission of fluids. Symptoms will develop 7-21 days after exposure.
According to the Maryland Department of Health, "Early symptoms of measles are fever more than 101*F, runny nose, cough, and red, watery eyes. Usually, one to four days after the early symptoms, a red rash appears on the face and spreads to the rest of the body. A person with measles is contagious beginning four days before the rash appears until four days after the rash begins."
How do you get an MMR vaccine?
The MMR vaccine can be administered by your family doctor. If you do not have a regular health care provider, a walk-in clinic or pharmacy on-site clinic can also give you the vaccine.
According to Deputy Secretary for Public Health Frances B. Phillips, RN, MHA:
"The measles virus can spread very easily between unvaccinated people, and there have been large outbreaks in several other areas of the country. Vaccination is the best way to stop additional infections. We are asking that Marylanders ensure they and their families are up-to-date on vaccinations against measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases.”
2019 National Statistics
Though the measles were considered eradicated in the United States by 2000, the current number of cases for 2019 (January 1-April 11, 2019) is 555, according to the CDC. So far, this is the second highest number of U.S. cases reported since 2000.
For more information about the measles cases in Maryland, visit the Maryland Department of Health website. You can also follow the national trends on the CDC website about the measles outbreaks reported and confirmed.
Have you or a family member had the measles? Tell us about it in the comments!