10 Jun 2014

Measles cases mounting in Hamilton

8:20 am on 10 June 2014

There is concern an outbreak of measles at a Hamilton high school could spread much further, and The Waikato District Health Board believes it highlights the need for immunisation.

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Photo: AFP

The Health Board has reported 32 suspected cases in the past week - almost all of them linked to Fraser High School. Non-immunised students at the school have been asked to stay at home.

The medical officer of health, Anita Bell, said the school was well-linked throughout Hamilton and so she expected the disease to spread.

"With this number of cases and with the links that that school, you know with the 11 to 15, 16, 17-year-olds, have across Hamilton, I would expect that we probably will start to see other cases in other schools in other areas."

Dr Bell said immunisation was the best protection from measles. Symptoms included a rash, fever, and a sore throat, but these might not show for the first few days, she said.

Dr Bell advised anyone with the disease to isolate themselves from others, and requested that parents ask their GPs if their children had had two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine.