Health officials confirm 4th case of measles in Connecticut for 2019

Health

(WTNH) — The Fairfield County and health officials have confirmed the 4th case of measles in Connecticut for 2019 and this time it’s in a school aged child.

“There were no exposures at the school. That’s the good news,” said Dr. Matthew Cartter, Director of Infectious Diseases, DPH.

A Fairfield county child has contracted the once-common measles virus. In response, the state Department of Public Health (DPH) on Friday urged everyone to get vaccinated.

Related: Could U.S. be next to lose measles-free status?

“We do not however know where this person was exposed. There was some out of state travel but no international travel. So we may never figure out where this person was exposed,” said Cartter.

Among the four cases this year, three were adults in New Haven county. One person contracted the disease in New York City during an outbreak. There’s no record that any were vaccinated and DPH cannot comment on individual cases.

DPH is in the process of tracking down anyone who may have made contact with the child to ensure they get vaccinated.

Related: News 8 On Call – Frequently asked questions about measles

Fairfield county has the highest number of students with exemptions to vaccines. Among 11,000 plus kindergartners, more than 350 have exemptions. This latest case comes amid a growing debate about whether students should be allowed to claim a religious exemption from vaccines.

“If someone is in a room with active measles, 90 percent of people in that room with that person can contract the measles,” said Dr. Patricia Garcia, CT Children’s Medical Center.

Hospitals like Connecticut Children’s Medical Center take great precautions to isolate patients who may have the virus.But there’s no real treatment and some children suffer grave complications.

“Once you have the measles, you’re kind of left waiting to have your own body fight it off,” said Garcia.

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