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Measles warning in Taranaki

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 19/06/2016

Health officials in Taranaki are warning people to watch out for symptoms of measles and to get vaccinated because two people who recently visited New Plymouth have the infectious disease.

"Both visited New Plymouth during the infectious period of their illness without knowing they had the disease and unfortunately may have now exposed others to measles," says Taranaki DHB's medical health officer Dr Greg Simmons.

Measles is a highly infectious and serious disease that spreads quickly.

Symptoms of measles can include fever, runny nose and sore, watery red eyes that can last for several days before a red blotchy rash appears.

People are infectious from five days before the rash appears and up to five days after.

"Now is the time to consider if you are immune to measles or not. I urge people to ensure they are fully immunised as this is the best way for people to protect themselves and others against measles and it is free to those who need it," Dr Simmons said.

There have been more than 30 cases of measles in Waikato and the outbreak has forced the temporary closure of some schools.

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