NSW Health is alerting airlinepassengers and shoppers after two more people were diagnosed with measles inWestern Sydney after travelling overseas.
The two unrelated cases involvetravellers who returned from South East Asia, taking the total number of peoplediagnosed with the highly-infectious disease in NSW since last December to23.
One is a teenager who returnedfrom the Philippines and was infectious while on flight CEBU Pacific 5J41,which left Manila at 11:30pm on 16 March and arrived in Sydney at 10:30am on 17March.
The teenager was reported to havebeen vaccinated as a child, although the number of doses received cannot beverified.
People who were on the same flightand at Sydney Airport’s T1 International terminal between 10:30am and 1:15pmshould be alert for symptoms of measles until April 5.
While infectious, the teenageralso visited:
- Pacific Chinese Restaurant at Blacktown on 17 March 2019 between 2:00pm and 3.15pm
- Stanhope Medical and Dental Centre on 18 March between 2:45pm and 4.00pm
The second case involves a man inhis 30s who developed measles after returning to Sydney from Thailand. Hisvaccination status is unknown.
While infectious, he attended theMy Health Medical Centre at Eastwood Shopping Centre. People who visited thecentre on Monday 18 March between 12pm and 1pm should also be alert for signsand symptoms of measles until 5 April, as the time from exposure to symptomscan be up to 18 days.
Public Health Unit staff areworking with both medical centres to contact patients who were at the practiceat the same time as the teenager and man to arrange preventive treatment asrequired.
NSW Health Director of Communicable Diseases, Dr VickySheppeard, said while these places do not pose an ongoing risk, people who maybe susceptible to measles and were at the same locations at the two infectiouspeople, should contact their local Public Health Unit for advice on 1300 066055.
Preventive injections can be givento highly-susceptible people up to six days after exposure.
“If you develop symptoms, please call ahead to your GP toensure you do not wait in the waiting room with other patients,” Dr Sheppeardsaid.
“The measles-mumps-rubella vaccine is safe and effectiveprotection against measles. It’s free for anyone born during or after 1966 whohasn’t already had two doses. If you’re unsure whether you’ve had two doses,it’s safe to have another.”
Symptoms include fever, sore eyes and a cough followedthree or four days later by a red, blotchy rash spreading from the head andneck to the rest of the body.
Outbreaks of measles in popular tourist destinations,particularly the Philippines, means the risk for measles being imported intoAustralia remains high.
Measles is highly contagious andis spread in the air through coughing or sneezing by someone who is unwell withthe disease. For more information on measles visit: health.nsw.gov.au/Infectious/measles/Pages/default.aspx