Health officials warn of measles exposure in NJ, including at Newark Airport

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NEW JERSEY — A tourist and a New Jersey resident sick with measles may have exposed others to the virus at multiple locations, including Newark airport, state health officials said Friday.

The two cases of measles are unrelated, health officials said.

One individual was a tourist who stopped briefly in New Jersey on April 30 while traveling on a bus from Niagara Falls, N.Y., to Washington, D.C.

The other individual developed measles after they came in contact with an international traveler who was ill with the virus.

Anyone who thinks they were exposed to the virus is urged to contact their health care provider “immediately to discuss potential exposure and risk of developing the illness.”

Exposed individuals could develop symptoms as late as May 23, state health officials said.

Those who visited the following locations on the follow dates may have been exposed to measles:

  • Towne Centre at Englewood apartments
    20 W. Palisade Ave., Englewood, NJ
    April 24 – May 2 – any time
  • Renaissance Office Center
    15 Engle St., Englewood, NJ
    April 30, between 1 p.m. and 3:45 p.m.
  • Newark Liberty International Airport, Terminal C
    May 2, between 11 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.
  • Columbia Travel Center, I-80 at Rt. 94
    2 Simpson Road, Columbia, NJ
    April 30, between 9:45 a.m. and 12:20 p.m.

Anyone who has been exposed to the virus is at risk of becoming ill they have not been vaccinated against measles or have not had the measles.

Two doses of the vaccine are about 97 percent effective in preventing measles, said Dr. Christina Tan, state epidemiologist.

“We urge everyone to check to make sure they and their family members are up-to-date on measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine and all other age-appropriate immunizations,” she said. “Getting vaccinated not only protects you, it protects others around you who are too young to get the vaccine or can’t receive it for medical reasons.”

Symptoms of measles include rash, high fever, cough, runny nose and red, watery eyes. The illness is easily spread through the air when a patient coughs or sneezes, or when a person comes into contact with mucus or saliva from an infected person.

It can cause serious complications, like pneumonia and swelling of the brain. In pregnant women, measles can lead to miscarriage, premature birth or a low-birth-weight baby.

A dose of the measles vaccine is recommended for anyone planning an international trip, including adults or adolescents unsure of their immune status.

For more information on what to do if you’ve been exposed to measles, click here.

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