11 Mar 2019

Measles outbreaks prompt immunisation reminder to Asia Pacific travellers

11:49 am on 11 March 2019

New Zealand's health ministry is reminding travellers in the region to make sure they are immunised against measles after a spate of recent outbreaks.

girl being vaccinated against measles

Photo: AFP / Getty Images North America

Cases have been reported in the Philippines, parts of Europe and New Zealand this year.

New Zealand's Deputy Director of Public Health, Hariette Carr, said measles was extremely contagious and could be spread before people realised they had it.

People should check their immunisation status before travelling, she said.

"If you're planning to travel to a country where there is a known measles outbreak, or to other areas in the Pacific, it's really important for people to check that they've been vaccinated for measles before they go," Dr Carr said.

"You'd feel really bad if you were the one who introduced measles into a country which doesn't currently have an outbreak."

Early symptoms include a high fever, a cough and watery eyes, she said.

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