Florida Department of Health Investigates Measles Outbreak in Broward County

Florida Department of Health Investigates Measles Outbreak in Broward County | Healthcare 360 Magazine

[Source- NBC News]

The Florida Department of Health (DOH) has launched an epidemiological investigation following multiple reported cases of measles at a Broward County elementary school. The investigation comes in response to four confirmed cases that emerged at Manatee Bay Elementary School in Weston over the weekend.

Florida Department of Health-Broward, in a statement released on Sunday, announced its ongoing investigation into the measles cases while maintaining confidentiality regarding specific details. The agency emphasized its continuous collaboration with partners such as Broward County Public Schools and local hospitals to identify individuals at risk of transmission.

Protection through Immunization

In its press release, DOH-Broward underscored the importance of immunization, particularly the Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) vaccine. Individuals who have received the full series of MMR immunization are deemed to be 98% protected against measles, significantly reducing the likelihood of contracting the disease.

Measles, characterized by its high contagiousness, can remain infectious in the air and on surfaces for up to two hours, posing a significant risk to susceptible individuals. With a contraction rate of over 90% among susceptible contacts, including those who are immunocompromised or unvaccinated, measles presents a serious public health concern.

Measures Taken by Florida Department of Health-Broward

DOH-Broward is taking proactive measures to identify susceptible contacts who may require post-exposure prophylaxis through MMR vaccination or immunoglobulin administration. Symptoms of measles typically manifest about eight to 14 days after exposure but can appear up to 21 days later. Notably, transmission is possible both before and after the onset of the characteristic rash, which typically spreads from the face and neck to the rest of the body.

Recognizing Symptoms

Key symptoms of measles include a high fever, cough, runny nose, and red, watery eyes, in addition to the characteristic rash. Individuals experiencing these symptoms are advised to contact their healthcare provider promptly for guidance on seeking medical attention safely and preventing exposure to others.

Precautionary Measures

Florida Department of Health-Broward urges individuals who suspect they may have measles or exhibit symptoms to refrain from visiting healthcare facilities or DOH-Broward offices without prior communication. Instead, individuals are encouraged to contact their healthcare provider or DOH-Broward for instructions on seeking medical care while minimizing the risk of spreading the virus further.

As the investigation into the measles outbreak in Broward County continues, Florida Department of Health-Broward emphasizes the importance of vaccination and prompt medical attention in mitigating the spread of the disease and safeguarding public health.

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