Measles confirmed in Oakland County: Here's what you need to know

FLINT (WJRT) - (03/14/19) - Michigan health officials have confirmed a travel-related case of measles involving a person visiting from Israel. They say people may have been exposed this month at several places in the Detroit suburbs of Oak Park and Southfield.

If you haven't been vaccinated, it's incredibly contagious.

"It spreads very quickly because it's airborne. For example, if I have the measles, and I cough, everybody in this room would be affected. If a kid going to school coughs, sneezes, or plays basketball, all the teammates would be exposed," Joseph Karanja said. Karanja is a Hamilton Clinic family nurse practitioner.

Signs and symptoms of measles begins with a fever, then coughing, sneezing, red eyes, and a red rash starting at the forehead and working its way around the body.

The good news is the disease is preventable. Typically, children are vaccinated between 12 and 15 months for the first dose, and then between 4 and 6 years old for the second dose.

"There is vaccine. It's called MMR. It prevents three other diseases: measles, mumps, and rubella. It's very safe. It's 97% effective if you get the two doses and around 93% effective if you just get one dose," Karanja said.

Karanja says the biggest thing is prevention, so you're encouraged to do research and ask questions.

He says Hamilton Clinic and most other health services will not turn you away if you are not covered by insurance.

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