A case of measles has been confirmed at Ormskirk hospital with three suspected cases under investigation at Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust.

The confirmed measles case was a child who attended the accident and emergency department earlier this month. An adult who had contact with the child =
has also had measles symptoms and was treated at Southport hospital before being discharged home. The Trust saw a further two suspected cases, one adult and one child, on Saturday 24 November.

More than 600 cases of measles have been confirmed in the North West this year, the highest of any English region, with the outbreak centred on Merseyside and West Lancashire. It is the biggest outbreak in the area since the MMR vaccine that protects against measles, mumps and rubella was introduced in 1988.

Dr Geraldine Boocock, Medical Director of the Trust, said: “Measles is an avoidable viral illness that is highly infectious and spreads easily among le who are not protected by two doses of MMR vaccine. Although most people will get over measles without too many problems, a significant number will develop serious complications including ear infection, diarrhoea, pneumonia or meningitis.

“People who suspect they or a family member has measles should telephone their GP before attending GP surgeries, NHS walk-in centres or hospital A&E d
epartments. This allows arrangements to be made in advance to minimise the measles patients’ contact with other people who may be vulnerable to infect

The Health Protection Agency also advises:

Avoiding contact with others, particularly pregnant women and infants as they are more vulnerable to infection and measles is highly in

Staying away from schools, nurseries and work places until at least four days after the onset of the rash.

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