Measles case in Adelaide

SA Health has been notified of a case of measles in a 22-year-old woman from South Australia. The woman was at the following locations while infectious, and people in the vicinity may have been exposed:

  • Goodlife Gym Glenelg at 520 Anzac Highway, Glenelg, 15 April, from 6.00am - 7.30am.
  • Bomdia Bowls (health food/ smoothie bar) at 2B Moseley Street, Glenelg, 15 April, 8.00am-5.00pm.
  • Plympton Park Day & Night Surgery, 590-592 Marion Rd, Plympton Park, 17 April, 11.15am -12.30pm.
  • Blair Athol Medical Clinic & Pharmacy, 502 Main North Rd, Blair Athol, 23 April, 10.00am -10:30am.
  • Clinpath collection centre at Blair Athol Medical Clinic & Pharmacy, 502 Main North Rd, Blair Athol, 23 April, 10.00am -10:30am.

There have been 104 of measles cases reported in Australia this year, with ongoing outbreaks in New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia, and the Northern Territory. Excluding this case, no cases have been notified in South Australia since early February. This case had not travelled interstate or overseas recently. The source of her infection has not been identified.

Measles is transmitted via respiratory aerosols that remain a risk to others for up to 30 minutes after the person has left the area. The incubation period is about 10 days (range 7 to 18 days) to the onset of prodromal symptoms and about 14 days to rash appearance. The illness is characterised by cough, coryza, conjunctivitis, a descending morbilliform rash, and fever present at the time of rash onset. The infectious period is from 24 hours prior to onset of the prodrome until 4 days after the onset of the rash.

Doctors with patients suspected of having measles are asked to:

  • Notify urgently any patient with suspected measles to the CDCB on 1300 232 272 (24 hours/7 days). Do not wait for laboratory confirmation.
  • Arrange urgent laboratory testing through SA Pathology. Take throat swabs in viral transport medium for measles PCR (preferred specimen) and urine for measles PCR (yellow top container).
  • Isolate suspected and confirmed measles cases and exclude from child-care/ school/ workplace for 4 days after rash appearance.
  • Ensure all household and other contacts are protected against measles as indicated in the Australian Immunisation Handbook .
  • Minimise transmission of measles:
    • Examine patients suspected of having measles in their own homes wherever possible.
    • Ensure the patient is only seen by practice staff who have confirmed immunity to measles.
    • Ensure suspected cases do not use the waiting room, and conduct the consultation in a room that can be left vacant for at least 30 minutes afterwards.
    • Treat all people who attend the rooms at the same time as and up to 30 minutes after the infectious patient has left the rooms as contacts.

Measles vaccination

  • Two doses of a measles containing vaccine are highly effective at preventing measles. Offer measles vaccine (unless contraindicated, for example in pregnant women or immunosuppression) to all potentially susceptible persons who attend your practice.
  • While most people born in Australia before 1966 will have had measles in childhood, those born in the late 1960s to mid-1980s may have only received one measles vaccine.
  • Vaccination against measles can now be given from 6 months of age in infants travelling to countries where measles is endemic or a measles outbreaks are occurring (if given <12 months, 2 subsequent doses will be required).

Further clinical information is available: Infectious disease control

For all enquiries please contact the CDCB on 1300 232 272 (24 hours/7 days)

Dr Louise Flood – Director, Communicable Disease Control Branch

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