PIKESVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — The calls are coming in from patients, worried their visit to a certain medical office building in Pikesville may have them at the risk of contracting the measles.
Maryland’s first confirmed case this year has some Marylanders talking about vaccines.
“Oh, if you’ve never had the vaccines, you’re infinitely more at risk, because you don’t have the immune response,” said Professor Betsy Johnson of the Maryland School of Nursing.
She said the virus starts out like a cold and turns into a rash, fever and mouth sores.
Nationally, the outbreak is growing, exceeding 465 cases in 20 states.
“It is a respiratory disease that’s spread through the air, so you know, it’s kind of close. You and I…if I had the measles and was standing this close to you. Yes, you could get it from me. It also can stay on surfaces for a short amount of time,” Johnson said.
And although vaccinated kids and adults are at a low risk, and 99 percent of Marylanders get the shot before kindergarten, some Pikesville parents are still nervous.
“Definitely anxious. I know my wife is anxious about the outbreak and what it means, and where you go today. So instead of going to the Target up the street, she went to a Target in a different neighborhood,” said Brad Burgunder, parent.
Whether more cases result from the exposure on Old Court Road- is a waiting game- as health experts stress the life or death value of vaccinations.
“Get them vaccinated, get them vaccinated today,” Johnson said.
Only those who visited the building on April 2 are at risk. Experts said the biggest advice is to stay home if you have symptoms of the disease, and don’t visit- but call- your doctor for advice on what to do next.