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Health officials urging vaccination after SLO County resident di - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Health officials urging vaccination after SLO County resident diagnosed with measles

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One person has been diagnosed with the measles virus in San Luis Obispo County.

The illness is very contagious, which is why health officials are warning everyone to get the vaccination.

After San Luis Obispo parent Rhianna Henderson heard there was a case of measles in the county, she made it a priority to get her baby vaccinated.

“I think it just makes me much more aware of making sure that my kids get vaccines on time on a regular basis,” she said.

The San Luis Obispo Public Health Department said the adult who was diagnosed with measles was exposed to the virus while traveling out of state and was only partially vaccinated against it.

“Every person is recommended to have two vaccines. In the case of this individual, there had been only one vaccination and so the person was still susceptible,” explained Dr. Penny Borenstein, San Luis Obispo County Health Officer.

According to Dr. Borenstein, everyone should get their first vaccination at the age of one and the second dose between four and six-years-old.

She explains that infants have a higher risk of getting the virus, along with pregnant women and people with immune conditions.

Measles is spread easily. Borenstein says the virus can hang in the air or on a surface where an infected person has coughed or sneezed.

“It’s a rash illness that usually comes with respiratory symptoms like cough, cold, sneezing and then when the fever starts, often they will get a rash. (It) often starts around here, in the back of the ears, and then it continues over the next few days to spread completely down the body,” Borenstein said.

The person with measles is reportedly doing well and has been cooperating with the health department to ensure the virus is not spread any further.

There is no treatment for the measles and symptoms can take up to 12 days to appear.

The measles vaccination is also required in order to allow a child to enter a public school.

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