BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Health officials have confirmed a third case of measles in Maryland.
According to the Maryland Department of Health, another case of the measles was also reported in the Pikesville area and there are three locations of possible public exposure, including two markets.
If you were in these locations at these times, please see your doctor.
- 4000 Old Court Rd in Pikesville on Sunday, April 14 from 10:30 a.m. till 1:30 p.m.
- Market Maven (1630 Reisterstown Rd, Pikesville) on Sunday, April 14 from 11:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
- Seven Mile Market (201 Reisterstown Rd, Pikesville) on Sunday, April 14 from 12:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
“It is concerning that three cases of measles have been identified in Maryland in such a short period of time,” said Deputy Secretary for Public Health Frances B. Phillips, RN, MHA. “The measles virus can spread very easily between unvaccinated people, and there have been large outbreaks in several other areas of the country. Vaccination is the best way to stop additional infections. We are asking that Marylanders ensure they and their families are up-to-date on vaccinations against measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases.”
The health department recommendations for those exposed to measles are below:
- If you are healthy and know you have had two doses of MMR vaccine, you do not need to take any additional actions
- If your immune system is currently weakened by disease or medications, even if you have received two doses of MMR vaccine, call your doctor right away and tell them you might have been exposed to measles as you might need a medication called immune globulin
- If you know you have NOT received two doses of MMR vaccine, or if you aren’t sure whether or not you have received two doses of MMR vaccine, call your doctor right away to determine next steps since you might need a dose of MMR vaccine or a medication called immune globulin
- Monitor for possible symptoms of measles, such as fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes and rash, and call your doctor before visiting their office so they can make special arrangements to evaluate you, if needed, without putting other patients and medical office staff at risk
Measles is a contagious vaccine-preventable viral infection which is easily spread to unvaccinated persons through coughing, sneezing and secretions from the mouth. The measles virus may remain in the air for up to two hours. Measles symptoms typically develop 10 to 14 days after exposure to the virus but can develop as soon as seven days or as long as 21 days after exposure. Early symptoms of measles are fever more than 101F, runny nose, cough and red, watery eyes. Usually, one to four days after the early symptoms, a red rash appears on the face and spreads to the rest of the body. A person with measles is contagious beginning four days before the rash appears until four days after the rash begins.
“You could walk into a room after someone who has been infected has left the room, and still get the disease,” Gregory Branch, Director of Health, Baltimore County, said.
Those who have been in the area of exposure have expressed concerned.
“We’re all trying to do our best to make sure everyone is vaccinated because we have infants and the danger is the people who can’t be vaccinated or people who are sick,” Sara Strobell, a shopper at 7 Mile Market, said. “It can linger and a lot of people come shopping here.”
State Officials have posted signs at the entrance of the grocery stores to warn shoppers.
“I was not happy about it,” Jill Weiss, a shopper at 7 Mile Market, said. “If I had seen the sign before, I probably wouldn’t have walked in.”
In the first two confirmed cases of the measles, health officials said that the patients are in some way connected to the same household and that they picked up the illness outside of Maryland in an area with an ongoing outbreak.
There is no word yet on if the third case has been connected.