Two dozen unvaccinated Huntington Beach High School students have been sent home over three weeks under threat of a measles outbreak. One had actually contracted the disease.
Orange County Health Care Agency Medical Director Matt Zahn authored a measles notification letter informing parents of the single case of the illness. That student was present oh the high school campus January 6-8. Parents were warned measles can be extremely easily spread through the air or direct contact. Transmission can occur just being in the same room as an infected person.
Students are expected to return to school Jan. 29, according to the Orange County Register.
51 cases of measles have been reported in California since an outbreak began at Disneyland in mid-December. Sixteen of cases have been confirmed in Orange County alone. Ten of the Orange County cases have been linked to the Disneyland outbreak; however, the six most recent cases have no known contact with or connection to the Disneyland cases, an Orange County Health Care Agency release stated.
“If your child has not received at least one dose of MMR and is exposed to measles, he/she may be excluded from attending school or child care to prevent further spread of disease,” states an OC Health Care Agency parent letter. While immunizations are required for children to attend school, parents may sign California Personal Beliefs Exemption form in order to allow their children to attend school despite not receiving required vaccinations.
The letter from Zahn and sent to parents described the signs and symptoms of measles and urged parents to take children to receive the MMR vaccine.
A recently released study of northern California regions found the very poor and those gradute-level educated were most likely to under-vaccinate their children.
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