BEND, OR -- Local Public Health issued an advisory this week, after officials in Kentucky discovered someone with Measles attended a massive religious event, "The event that happened in Kentucky, there were over 20,000 people in attendance, from different states. And that could mean people from Oregon were also present at that event," says Dr. Rita Bacho, Deschutes County's Communicable Disease Program Manager. "Because we don’t really know who was six feet close to him, or who was at the event, even, this is something that every state is trying to take precautions and proactively messaging to prevent any outbreaks."
She says the two-dose MMR vaccine is 97% effective. But among the unvaccinated, Dr. Bacho tells KBND News, Measles can spread like wildfire and symptoms can be severe, "Measles can lead to high fever, severe cough, runny nose, red eyes or conjunctivitis. It could also lead to tiny white spots; these may appear in the mouth 2-3 days after symptoms begin." There’s also a rash that can spread all over the body.
The Deschutes County and statewide vaccination rate is 88%. "We’ve received questions from the public about whether they need a booster vaccine," says Dr. Bacho, "And the answer to that is ‘No.’ If you’ve been vaccinated with two doses of the Measles vaccine as a child, or even as an adult, you are pretty much almost 100% protected."
So far, there are no reported cases of Measles in Oregon. Anyone who attended last month’s religious event at Asbury University and is not fully vaccinated, or who is showing symptoms, is urged to quarantine and contact local public health.