NSW confirms first case of measles since 2020

NSW has recorded its first confirmed case of measles for the first time since February 2020.

The confirmed case, a person in their 50s, acquired the infection while travelling in Asia last month, and developed symptoms after they had returned to Sydney.

The measles, mumps and rubella vaccine. Credit:AP

The locations that were visited by the infectious person are St Andrews Catholic Church at Malabar on September 4, Tyree Energy Building at the University of NSW on Tuesday 6, Lounge Restaurant at UNSW on September 6 and Pacific Square in Maroubra on September 7.

NSW Health’s executive director in health protection, Dr Jeremy McAnulty, said that people who had attended locations visited by the infectious person are not necessarily at risk, but urged people who may be susceptible to monitor for symptoms.

Measles symptoms can include a fever, sore eyes and a cough, followed by a blotchy rash that spreads from the head and neck to the rest of the body.

“If you develop symptoms, please call ahead to your GP to ensure you do not wait in the waiting room with other patients,” Dr McAnulty said.

“This incident highlights the importance of ensuring that all people able to be vaccinated have received two doses of measles vaccine, particularly prior to overseas travel, as measles outbreaks are occurring in several regions of the world at present.

“Maintaining high rates of measles immunisation within the community reduces the risk of measles being imported into Australia by returned travellers, and through herd immunity, reduces the spread of the virus locally if it is introduced.”

The Australian Government’s Department of Health defines measles as a highly contagious disease which is spread by droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

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