WINCHESTER, Va. (WDVM) — The measles disease was eradicated in the United States in 2000 but in 2019, cases are on the rise again.
So far this year, there have been 1,044 cases nationwide which is up from 68 cases in 2010. The director of the Lord Fairfax Health District is telling the public what they should do to prevent its spread.
“Because of the increasing prevalence of people that don’t get vaccinated there is a larger population of people that might be at risk,” said Lord Fairfax Health District director Dr. Colin Greene.
The health department warns anyone born after 1958 to double check if they’ve been vaccinated.
“When it comes to vaccination, it’s just something so affordable and easily accessible to everyone in the community. So if you can get it for even free at times and not only help yourself but help the people around you, why not do it?” said Winchester resident Brandon Washington.
One in 1,000 cases result in death or permanent brain damage.
“Up to a quarter of the people that get sick with measles and particularly more likely adults, will actually be hospitalized they’ll get that sick,” said Dr. Greene.
It’s important to take extra precautions if you’re a frequent traveler.
“Measles is running ramped all over Europe because there have been 10 or 20 thousand cases in the last year of measles in Europe because the anti-vaxer movement is strong there,” said Dr. Greene.
If you think you might have the measles, you’re urged to call your local emergency room first before arriving so they can prepare a special quarantine room for you.