NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The number of confirmed cases of the measles in Rockland County continues to grow.
Health officials said Thursday that 72 people have come down with the infectious disease since the initial outbreak back in early October. That’s up four cases from earlier in the week. Another seven cases are suspected of being the measles.
The vast majority of people are immune from measles after receiving the so-called “MMR vaccine,” but the disease can be highly contagious for the unvaccinated. Classic symptoms include red rash, fever, runny nose, red eyes that become sensitive to light, and coughing.
Symptoms usually appear 10-12 days after exposure but may appear as early as seven days and as late as 21 days after exposure, health officials said.
A quarter of victims wind up in the hospital.
To prevent the spread of the measles, the health officials are advising people who may have been exposed and who have symptoms consistent with the illness to contact their health care provider, a local clinic, or a local emergency department before going for care. This will help to prevent others at these facilities from being exposed to the illness.
The initial outbreak in Rockland was centered in Hasidic communities, including one in the village of New Square. Banners and fliers throughout the community have been urging people to receive the vaccination.
Investigators believe travelers brought the disease from Ukraine, where there’s currently a massive outbreak. From there, they brought it to Israel and eventually New York.
Israel is grappling with one of its worst measles outbreak in decades, with well over 1,000 cases reported since the beginning of 2018. The World Health Organization has reported tens of thousands of measles cases across Europe.
At the onset of the outbreak, officials were warning about possible measles contagion from an unidentified traveler at some point between Oct. 4 and Oct. 11:
- Congregation Bais Elazer in Monsey, N.Y. on Oct. 4
- Mia’s Reflexology in New City, N.Y. on Oct. 4
- Lifetime Gym in Montvale, N.J. on Oct. 5
- Wesley Kosher in Monsey N.Y. on Oct. 5
- Congregation Borov in Monsey, N.Y. on Oct. 5 and Oct. 6
- Costco in Nanuet, N.Y. on Oct. 7
- Care 365 in Monsey, N.Y. on Oct. 8
- Westchester Medical Center’s Emergency Room in Valhalla, N.Y. on Oct. 11