Measles Outbreak Across the State

An early symptom of measles is called Koplik Spots, which manifests 2-3 days before the actual measles rash itself

de:User:Steffen Bernard [Public domain]

An early symptom of measles is called Koplik Spots, which manifests 2-3 days before the actual measles rash itself

Diana Venegas, Journalist

As of December 31, 2018, a measles outbreak occurred in the United States. Since then, it has not been stopped and has continued to spread throughout the United States.

The Salisbury Daily Times reported several confirmed measles cases in Maryland. In total, there are 22 confirmed states that have been affected by the most recent outbreak, and about 704 cases in total. The closest it has gotten to that was in 2014, with 667 reported cases according to the CDC.

News 10 walks you through what to do if you think you have the disease. “The easiest way to prevent measles, according to Sidelinger, is the vaccine. You can check to see if you have immunity.”

Freshman Songaya Gooden-Daniels comments there is a way to help prevent spreading, “I don’t think we can pass laws because for some people it plays into their religion… So I think all we can do is educate them on the topic…”

The disease was said to be eliminated in 2000, but has climbed back up to what is known as the biggest measles outbreaks in the U.S according to the Wall Street Journal. So, how did the so-called ‘eliminated disease’ come back and have such a bad impact? The outbreaks are associated with travelers coming in and out of the state. Junior Julieta Martinez commented, “I believe that if people want to travel to foreign countries where those diseases are common, they should be required to be vaccinated.”

The Los Angeles Times confirmed that there was a measles outbreak about 2 weeks ago in California. More than 1,000 people were told to stay home, and others were quarantined. Sacramento, Los Angeles, and Orange County have reported outbreaks.

Seventh grader Darla Valerio suggested a resolution to the outbreak: people should have to get “a doctor’s word that they are clear before traveling back to America”. According to the California Department of Public Health, there are 40 confirmed cases of measles outbreaks. The most recent one being on May 4, 2019. Only one case was reported.

What are measles? Its a highly contagious and fast spreading disease. It’s so easily spread that even being too close to someone with the disease can cause you to catch it.

An early symptom to look out for are Koplik spots, that look like tiny grains of sand surrounded by a red ring at the roof of the mouth. Other ways to catch measles (according to the Mayo Clinic) include kissing, labor, being coughed on or being touched by someone who is infected. Some symptoms include developing rashes, coughing, and red watery eyes.

There are ways to know whether or not you are safe from the measles virus. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has put out a statement to inform the people as quick as possible. If you are a vaccinated school-grade child (K-12) chances are you cannot catch the measles. The CDC also gave out a list of possible complications caused by the measles. There are a few common ones such as ear infections or diarrhea. However, there have been more severe cases that end in death. Pneumonia can be developed or even encephalitis (swelling of the brain). Not to mention for every thousand children who catch the measles, 1-2 will die from it.