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Olmsted County Releases Measles Warning to Parents

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Following the recent outbreak of measles in the twin cities, the Olmsted County Public Health Services Department has issued a warning to parents of Rochester Public School students.  The following is the full, unedited text of the letter that was sent out to parents.  Read carefully and take any preventative steps necessary to help protect yourself and your family from measles.

“Several cases of measles have been confirmed in the St. Paul/Minneapolis area in the last month. Unfortunately, measles spreads very easily by air and direct contact.  More cases are expected including outside of the metro counties. The good news is that measles is preventable through vaccination with the Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) vaccine.

 

Important Information:

  • Measles can be very serious, especially in infants, pregnant women who are not immune, and immunocompromised individuals.
  • If an individual has never had measles or has never received the MMR vaccine, they are at risk of developing measles if exposed.
  • To prevent the spread of measles, state and local public health authorities are taking action to prevent unvaccinated & immunocompromised children and staff who have been exposed to a case of measles from attending daycare, school, or social activities for 21 days.  If a student does not attend school as a result of being exposed to measles, the District will make arrangements with the student’s family to ensure that appropriate educational services are provided while the student is unable to attend school.
  • The MMR vaccine is given to children in two doses, typically at 12 months and between 4-6 years. The first dose offers good protection, and the second dose provides extra security. An accelerated vaccine schedule is often recommended during outbreaks.
  • The vaccine is safe and effective.
  • Check with your healthcare provider to find out if your child needs an MMR. If your child(ren) are not vaccinated, get them vaccinated today.
  • Minnesota Vaccines for Children Program provides free or low-cost vaccines for eligible children through age 18.
  • Typical measles symptoms include fever, cough, runny nose, followed by a rash and watering/mattery eyes.
  • If you or your child has symptoms of measles, be sure to stay at home and avoid having visitors until you have contacted your healthcare provider.

Your vaccination decision affects not only the health of your child, but also your family, your child’s friends, their families, and your community. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

If you have any questions or concerns, please call your healthcare provider or Olmsted County Public Health at 507-328-7500. For additional information on measles and the current outbreak, please visit the Minnesota Department of Health Measles Website.”

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Olmsted County Releases Measles Warning to Parents