Measles cases linked to Mid West outbreak identified in Clare, Dublin and Galway

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Cases of measles linked to outbreak in the Mid West identified in Clare, Dublin and Galway

There are now 28 confirmed measles cases linked to the ongoing outbreak in the Mid-West region. The majority of these are in Limerick City. There is one associated case in Clare, one in Dublin and one in Galway, all linked to the Limerick outbreak. There are also a number of cases in the South East area, who are possibly linked to the Limerick outbreak.

The Measles Outbreak Control Team is continuing to investigate the measles cases and offer advice on the measures to control the further spread of this potentially serious illness.

A free HSE MMR vaccination clinic (no appointment needed) is being held in Barrack View Primary Care Centre, Edward Street, Limerick on 12th April at 3-4pm. Additionally for the duration of this outbreak MMR vaccination is free of charge to the public from GPs as the HSE is paying for the vaccine and for the GPs to give the vaccine.

A review of the measles outbreaks reported in Ireland so far in 2018 (weeks 1-12, 2018) was published in the April issue of Epi Insight

MMR vaccination
The best protection against measles is to be fully vaccinated with 2 doses of the MMR (Measles-Mumps-Rubella) vaccine. Please note that during this outbreak MMR vaccine is free of charge to the public as the HSE is paying for the vaccine and for the GPs to give the vaccine.

The HSE is advising all adults aged under 40 to check if they have had two doses of MMR and if not to arrange to get immunised by their GP. This outbreak demonstrates that measles is not just a childhood illness, around half of the cases are adults aged less than 40 years of age.

Parents of children in the region should also check if their children have had the vaccines appropriate for their age (1st one at 1 year, 2nd one in Junior Infants in primary school).

What to do if you have symptoms of measles
If you have symptoms suggestive of measles you should stay at home, not go to school or work and phone your GP and explain that you may have measles. People who have not been fully vaccinated with MMR vaccine or have not had measles in the past are at high risk of getting measles if exposed. Those most at risk of catching measles are those who are not fully vaccinated with 2 doses of MMR vaccine such as babies younger than 12 months who are too young to be vaccinated, and those with weakened immune systems.

Further information

HSE press release - HSE continues to urge adults aged under 40 across the Mid-West to get the MMR vaccine - 11/4/18

HPSC - measles factsheets

HSE NIO - MMR vaccine