BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Kern County Public Health Service officials received confirmation that a case of measles found in a minor had traveled through and spent the night in Kern County while infectious, Friday.
The last reported case in the county of the contagious virus was back in 2004.
Dr. Claudia Jonah, a county health officer, said residents should be informed of the signs and symptoms of the measles, so that everyone can take proper precautions.
Measles is highly contagious and the virus stays in the air for up to two hours after the infected person is no longer present.
Anyone exposed to the virus that has not been vaccinated, can become ill anywhere from 8 to 21 days after being exposed.
"Now is the time to check your vaccination status against measles so that you are protected," said Denise Smith, Director of Disease Control.
It is recommended to have had two Measles, Mumps, and Rubella vaccines, officials said.
According to Public Health officials, some symptoms to look out for when contracting measles, include:
- Measles typically begins with a mild to moderate fever accompanied by cough, runny nose, and watery eyes.
- Fever often spikes as high as 104 to 105 degrees.
- Red blotchy, raised rash appears, usually on the face first, along the hairline and being the ears. The rash can rapidly spread downward to the chest, back, thighs and feet.
- In approximately one week, the rash fades in the same sequence that it appeared.
Public health advises residents with any of the above symptoms between now and September 2, to stay home.
Do not go to school, go to work, use public transportation, or go anywhere else in public. You should immediately contact your healthcare provider, let them know about your symptoms and follow their instructions.
Do not enter a healthcare facility (doctor’s office, urgent care, emergency room) without first notifying someone inside that you possibly have symptoms of measles.