Parents rethinking shunning vaccines 1

Dr. Shruti K. Gohil, associate medical director for epidemiology and infection prevention at UCI Medical Center, holds a dose of MMR, the vaccine against measles, mumps and rubella.

WATERLOO — A Northeast Iowan who recently visited Israel was diagnosed with Iowa’s first case of measles since 2011, according to state officials.

The individual, identified only as someone from the northeast region of the state, was not vaccinated and had returned from Israel recently, “where measles transmission is occurring,” the Iowa Department of Public Health said in a Monday press release.

The person was tested at the State Hygenic Lab over the weekend.

“The individual has cooperated with public health officials,” the IDPH stated. “At this time there is no indication there is any threat to the public.”

It’s the first case of measles in Iowa since 2011, the department noted, though measles cases are on the rise elsewhere in the United States: 555 cases have been confirmed in 20 states by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “the second-greatest number of cases reported in the U.S. since measles was eliminated in 2000,” according to the CDC’s report from Jan. 1 through April 11.

Outbreaks have occurred in New York, California, Washington and New Jersey, linked largely to unvaccinated travelers returning from Israel, Ukraine and the Phillippines and reintroducing the disease into other populations of people who haven’t been vaccinated, according to the CDC.

The case “serves as a reminder for all Iowans to ensure their vaccinations are up-to-date,” the IDPH said in its release. “Vaccines prevent diseases and save lives.”

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Staff Writer

Staff writer at The Courier 2005 (college intern), 2007-2015, 2017-present. Graduate of UNI 2006. Three-time Iowa APME award winner (investigative reporting 2008, lifestyle feature 2016, business feature 2018)

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