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First Person Dies From Measles in 12 years

Officials confirmed that a woman killed by measles in Washington State this spring had been vaccinated as a child.

A combination of health problems, a depressed immune system, and medication interfered with her response to an infection rendering her unprotected from the deadly disease.

According to the Sun Herald, the woman’s death was the first from measles in the United States in 12 years and the first in the state of Washington in 25 years. Officials would not reveal the woman’s age in order to protect her identity, although they said she was not elderly.

It is believed she contracted the measles while being treated at a Clallam County hospital for a host of other health conditions and was likely exposed to an infected person seeking treatment. She died at University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle from pneumonia due to measles.

The infectious strain, reportedly, was not the same as the outbreak originating in Disneyland last year. Measles is highly contagious.  It can be spread through the air by way of coughing and sneezing.

The news of this measles related death comes just days after Gov. Jerry Brown signed a highly-contested bill into law making California one of three of the strictest states in  imposing childhood vaccines.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz and on Facebook

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