The South East Ohio mumps outbreak has climbed to 288 cases, meanwhile another viral outbreak is just starting.
Twenty-one confirmed or probable cases of measles have appeared primarily in Knox county, with one confirmed and two possible cases in Coshocton county. The cases in Knox county stem from an un-vaccinated group who traveled to the Philippines and became infected by the virus.
"It’s currently staying within the un-vaccinated population which is good," said Kristen Baker, South East Regional Epidemiologist. "As long as we are vaccinating ourselves, making sure that we’re up to date, washing our hands, and try to stay as healthy as possible, then we should be okay."
The Measles Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccine is most effective against the measles. However, measles is a more contagious and severe virus with the possibility of more complications developing as well as a higher risk of death in children. According to the health department, the mumps and measles have reappeared especially in cases where the victim was not immunized.
"We’ve seen increased media against vaccinations and there are people with philosophical beliefs that don’t want to be immunized themselves, and don’t want to get their children immunized," said Baker, "that ends up putting not only their children at risk for developing a disease, or complications and even death, but also the community that they’re in."
Symptoms of the measles include runny nose, red eyes, and fever preceding a redish-brown rash that will spread. For more information on the measles, you can visit the website http://www.cdc.gov/measles/