The city has issued a measles alert due to the widespread outbreaks in the U.S., encouraging residents to contact their healthcare provider.
Measles is one of the most contagious of all infectious diseases. Cases of measles have been recently seen in New York and Connecticut. There was also one case in Boston at the end of March.
Although we have not seen cases in western Massachusetts, Northampton’s public health director told 22News, it’s not a matter of if but when. That’s why the Board of Public Health is urging residents to get fully immunized with two doses of the measles immunization.
“The number of cases are quickly growing and we want people to have this information. The most important thing you could do is make sure you have the proper immunizations to protect yourself and your family, and community members from getting this disease,” said Merridith O’Leary, Public Health Director in Northampton.
Common symptoms of measles to look out for include fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes, and a rash.
O’Leary told 22News, they’re looking to achieve herd immunity, which means most of the population has been immunized to properly defend those who are not.