MEDIA RELEASES

More Measles Vaccination Clinics Planned in Mid North

With four cases of measles notified in Northland, and further cases expected, Northland DHB has extended the free vaccination clinics in the Mid North.

Dr Clair Mills, Medical Officer of Health at Northland DHB, advises Northlanders to ensure their families are protected from measles.

“Given these cases and the bigger outbreak in the Waikato and other regions occurring now, it is very possible that we will see this outbreak extend across Northland” said Dr Mills.
  • Saturday 21 May @ Kerikeri Netball Centre, 71 Waipapa Road - 8am-12noon
  • Saturday 21 May @ Northland DHB Office, 55 Hobson St Kerikeri – 9am-2pm (next to GJ Gardner Homes) 
  • Monday 23 May & Tuesday 24 May @ Kerikeri High School – 9am-3pm
  • Wednesday 25 May & Thursday 26 May @ Northland DHB Oral Health Clinic, 123 Hone Heke Rd, Kerikeri – 9am-3pm

She emphasised that immunisation is the best protection from this potentially serious disease.

“This is an avoidable disease where there is an effective vaccine. Immunisation protects not only the individual, but also stops the spread of this disease within our communities.”

“Please double-check that your child is not at risk. There is a window of opportunity now to catch up on any missed vaccinations. Vaccination is a much better option than having a very sick child at home for a couple of weeks, or having your teenager miss two weeks of school.”

Measles is spread by tiny droplets in the air and is very infectious, easily spreading to those nearby. The first symptoms (fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes) can be mistaken for a cold, with the rash (appearing on the face and neck and spreading over the body) three to five days later.

Measles vaccination rates are currently around 90% in Northland for children under 2 years, but coverage in the past was significantly lower, and many older children and teenagers will be at risk of measles infection as they were not vaccinated as infants.

Unimmunised people who have had contact with a person with measles, will normally be advised to stay at home and away from all public places, school or work for 14 days after their contact.

“Anyone born before 1969 or who has received two doses of MMR can reasonably assume they are already immune.”

Dr Mills says anyone displaying symptoms of measles, which include fever, cough, runny nose, sore red eyes, followed by a rash spreading from the head and neck over the body, should immediately telephone their doctor or a Northland Public Health Nurses on 0800 222 030 to seek advice.  



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