UNION COUNTY, NJ - The New Jersey Department of Health is warning residents about a confirmed case of measles in a New York City resident who potentially exposed individuals in Union County on May 30, 2019.
If residents visited the AristaCare Health Services Corporate Office, located at 245 Birchwood Ave in Cranford on May 30 between 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., they may have been exposed to measles.
For those who visited the location during the specified date and times, the first step should be to contact a health provider immediately to discuss potential exposure and risk of developing the illness.
Those who have not been vaccinated or have not had measles are at risk of catching the disease. Individuals who were potentially exposed or infected during the time frame listed above could develop symptoms as late as June 20.
Residents who suspect they may have been exposed are urged to call a health care provider before going to a medical office or emergency department. Special arrangements must be made by healthcare providers for evaluation while also protecting other patients and medical staff from possible infection.
Symptoms of measles include rash, high fever, cough, runny nose and red, watery eyes. In some cases, serious complications, such as pneumonia and encephalitis (swelling of the brain) can occur. Measles infection in a pregnant woman can lead to miscarriage, premature birth or a low-birth-weight baby.
Measles is easily spread through the air when someone coughs or sneezes. People can also get sick when they come in contact with mucus or saliva from an infected person. Anyone who has not been vaccinated for the disease or has not had measles is at risk if they are exposed.
"Two doses of measles vaccine are about 97 percent effective in preventing measles,” said Dr. Christina Tan, state epidemiologist.
“We urge everyone to check to make sure they and their family members are up-to-date on measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine and all other age-appropriate immunizations," Tan continued. "Getting vaccinated not only protects you, it protects others around you who are too young to get the vaccine or can’t receive it for medical reasons.
"If you’re planning an international trip, the World Health Organization recommends that adults or adolescents unsure of their immune status get a dose of measles vaccine before traveling,” she added.