Washtenaw County Public Health Alerts Public to Possible Exposure to Measles
Highly contagious disease highlights need for vaccination
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has confirmed a case of measles in a Livingston County adult who works in Washtenaw County. Washtenaw County Public Health is providing information to local residents because of potential exposure to measles in public areas in Washtenaw and neighboring counties between Sept. 26 and Oct. 2.
Anyone at any of the following Washtenaw locations during the dates and times provided should monitor themselves for rash with fever or other symptoms consistent with measles for 21 days. If you suspect measles, seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Please remember this alert is about a possible exposure that has already occurred. It is not about ongoing risk of exposure at these locations.
- Ann Arbor State Bank, located at 125 West William St., Ann Arbor, on Sept. 26 and Sept. 27 from 10am to 1pm each day.
- The Treasure Mart, located at 529 Detroit St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104, on Sept. 26 and Sept. 27 from 12pm (noon) to 2pm each day
- Humane Society of Huron Valley, located at 3100 Cherry Hill Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48105, on Sept. 28 and Sept. 29 from 4pm to 6pm each day.
- Karl’s Cabin Restaurant and Bar, located at 6005 Gotfredson Rd, Plymouth MI 48170, on Sept. 28 from 12:30pm to 3pm.
- Dixboro General Store, 5206 Plymouth Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48105, on Sept. 28 from 4pm to 7pm.
Measles is a highly-contagious disease that is spread through the air. The named businesses did nothing wrong.
Because measles can be spread through the air by an infected person, Washtenaw County Public Health is alerting the public to the potential exposures. A person with measles is contagious for four days before and four days after the rash appears. An individual in the same location up to two hours after an individual contagious with measles is considered potentially exposed.
“Measles is very contagious,” says Jessie Kimbrough Marshall, MD, MPH, medical director for Washtenaw County Public Health. “While the period for post-exposure vaccination has passed, we still have the responsibility of alerting our residents and health care providers to watch for signs of illness consistent with measles. Also, this potential exposure underscores the need for all eligible individuals to vaccinate against measles.”
Having two doses of MMR vaccine at least 28 days apart is fully protective. Having only one dose of MMR vaccine is approximately 93 percent protective. The first dose is routinely given to children after their first birthday. Vaccination is not necessary if an individual has a prior history of measles illness. Individuals born before 1957 are assumed to have natural immunity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The MMR vaccine is available through primary health care providers and at some local pharmacies. Individuals should contact their health care provider for advice. Washtenaw County Public Health also offers the MMR vaccine, call 544-6700 to schedule an appointment.
Measles (rubeola) is an extremely contagious disease caused by the measles virus. Measles can cause complications such as pneumonia and encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). Measles can also cause miscarriages or premature delivery in pregnant women.
The illness starts with a runny nose, red eyes, cough, fever and sore throat. Tiny white spots may appear in the mouth. A raised, red rash appears on the third to fifth day of illness. The rash typically starts on the face and spreads down the body and out to the arms and legs. The rash usually lasts four to seven days. Symptoms start seven to 14 days after being exposed to measles, and last one to two weeks.
How is it spread?
Droplets from the nose or mouth, through sneezing, coughing or speaking, spread measles. A person with measles is contagious for four days before and four days after the rash appears.