1 Aug 2019

Possible wider exposure from measles traveller

2:21 pm on 1 August 2019

The Southern District Health Board has issued an alert to Dunedin residents that they may have been exposed to measles.

An Auckland resident who has been diagnosed with measles spent time in Dunedin and at the city's airport while infectious last week.

Passengers who were in Dunedin and Auckland domestic terminals or on Air NZ 674 on 23 July in the afternoon may have come into contact with the infectious disease.

The health board said the resident may also have been infectious while visiting parts of the city including Esplanade Restaurant in St Clair on 22 July and the Market Kitchen Restaurant on George Street on 23 July.

Southern DHB medical officer of health Dr Anura Jayasinghe urged anyone to speak with their GP if they were not sure about their immunity.

"It usually takes 10 to 14 days for someone who has caught measles to develop symptoms. If anyone has been infected at the locations listed, they could start to develop symptoms from as soon as tomorrow," Dr Jayasinghe said.

"Symptoms include a high fever, runny nose, cough and sore red eyes. A few days later a rash starts on the face and neck, before spreading to the rest of the body."

The measles spread via breathing, coughing and sneezing when infectious droplets are dispersed through the air.

"We're asking people who were in these locations to keep a close eye out for these symptoms. If you develop symptoms, stay home and phone your general practice or Healthline (0800 611 116) and let them know that you have potentially been in contact with a confirmed measles case."

Immunisation is the best protection from the infectious disease.

The health board said the infected traveller might have been infectious while at the following locations:

  • Esplanade Restaurant, St Clair, at dinner on Monday, 22 July
  • Bluestone on George Motel, George Street, Dunedin between 22-23 July
  • Market Kitchen Restaurant, George Street, Dunedin, at lunch on Tuesday, 23 July
  • Dunedin and Auckland domestic terminals, on Tuesday 23 July

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