Minnesota health department reports ‘third travel-related case of measles’ in less than 6 weeks

Minnesota’s health department says the state has seen its “third travel-related case of measles in the state in less than six weeks.”


Minnesota travelers, be alert — health officials have a message for you: be on the lookout for measles symptoms.

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) announced Monday that health officials just confirmed the "third travel-related case of measles in the state in less than six weeks."

To avoid contracting the illness, state health officials are urging locals to get vaccinated immediately, especially ahead of any scheduled trips.

A 2-year-old from who came back from the Middle East has been found to have measles, according to the department.

“The Ramsey County child, who was partially vaccinated for measles, mumps and rubella, was likely infectious between Sept. 6 and Sept. 14,” the organization explained, adding people who were potentially exposed are being informed. 

However, health officials say it’s unlikely the virus will continue to spread.

“The risk to the public is low,” MDH said. “If additional cases were to develop as a result of this case, they would likely occur between now and Oct. 5.”

Though the department’s director of infectious disease, Kris Ehresmann, warned the virus is “just a plane ride away."

“That’s why it’s so important for both adults and children to be up-to-date on the recommended vaccines before they travel," she added in a statement.

Minnesota’s health department also laid out recommendations for kids concerning the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine.

Health officials recommend children receive two doses of the vaccine.

“The first at 12 to 15 months of age, and the second at 4 to 6 years of age. Children 6 to 12 months should get an early dose of MMR vaccine if they are traveling to a country where measles is common," MDH explains.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains how the disease can spread on its website. 

“Measles virus can live for up to two hours in an airspace where the infected person coughed or sneezed,” the agency says. “Measles is so contagious that if one person has it, 90% of the people close to that person who are not immune will also become infected.”


The vaccine may also help you reduce your risk of getting the virus. 

"Two doses of MMR vaccine are 97% effective against measles and 88% effective against mumps," the CDC says. "One dose of MMR vaccine is 93% effective against measles, 78% effective against mumps, and 97% effective against rubella."

However, getting the infection is still possible.

"About 3 out of 100 people who get two doses of MMR vaccine will get measles if exposed to the virus," the agency notes. "However, they are more likely to have a milder illness, and are also less likely to spread the disease to other people."

Fox News’ Jennifer Earl contributed to this report.

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