Following an imported case of measles notified in a tourist at Airlie Beach in mid-March, several further cases have been identified in north Queensland and interstate. There have been extensive movements by the cases at Airlie Beach and Cairns, particularly around backpacker hostels, Proserpine Hospital, Cairns Hospital, hotels, cinemas and supermarkets. A case has also travelled in and around Townsville. The Health Department is warning people who have been in these areas at any time from mid-March to be alert for the symptoms of measles infection.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease, causing fevers, runny nose, cough, red and watery eyes initially, followed by a rash that may spread across the whole body. Measles may cause significant complications such as pneumonia, blindness and encephalitis (an infection that causes brain swelling) in some people.
Vaccination is the only way to prevent measles. Anyone who has not had two measles containing vaccine, or anyone who is not sure, is strongly encouraged to get vaccinated.Anyone born from or after 1966 will receive the vaccine free as supplied by Queensland Health. People born before 1966 are likely to be already immune from previous measles infections in childhood.
Should you suspect you or a member of your family is experiencing symptoms of measles please phone our clinic for further advice BEFORE presenting to the clinic.
If you wish to be vaccinated, or have concerns that you may have contracted measles – please ring the clinic on 07 32675088 to advise us and get further information.