Measles in Iowa

Measles Reported in Central Iowa

A confirmed case of measles has occurred in a Dallas County resident. This situation is being treated as a public health emergency because measles spreads easily and can cause serious illness and death.

Local public health officials in Dallas and Polk counties are working with the Iowa Dept. of Public Health (IDPH) to determine who this individual may have exposed to measles and are at risk of becoming ill.

Any individuals who visited the following locations at the listed times should check to make sure they have received two MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccines. Those older than their mid-50s and know that they had measles as a child do not need to be vaccinated. If you have been at these places during these times and have not received two doses of MMR (or are not sure if you have received two MMRs), you should contact your county health department or health care provider to be vaccinated.

May 11

American Airlines Flight AA3965

Departed Chicago O’Hare: 11:55 a.m.

Arrived Des Moines International Airport: 1:05 p.m.

Des Moines International Airport – main terminal and baggage area

1:00 to 3:45 p.m.

May 14

Mercy Central Pediatric Clinic

330 Laurel St, Ste 2100, Des Moines Iowa

10:00 a.m. to close (offices closed at 2:00 p.m.)

Mercy Medical Center – Main Entrance, including waiting room, registration, outpatient testing and blood draw station areas

1111 6th Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa

Noon to 3:00 p.m.

The symptoms of measles include any or all of the following: fever, cough, red/pink eyes, runny nose and a rash. Anyone, regardless of age, who has not had measles or has not adequately responded to two doses of MMR (less than one percent), can get measles if exposed. Measles can cause serious illness, pneumonia, deafness, and brain inflammation. Two to three people out of 1,000 who get measles die from the disease. It is easily spread through the air and there is no treatment for the illness, so prevention is critical.

If you were at the places during the times listed above and have any symptoms consistent with measles, call your health care provider immediately and arrange to be seen safely. Do not go to the doctor’s office, ER, local public health agency, or a walk-in clinic until arrangements are made to be seen by your health care provider in a place and manner that will not potentially expose others to measles. Until arrangements are made, stay home; do not go into any public places.

“All Iowans should check their personal and family immunization records to make sure their measles vaccinations are up-to-date,” said IDPH Medical Director, Dr. Patricia Quinlisk. “To be fully vaccinated, an individual should have had two doses of the measles vaccine, or have had measles in the past.”

For Adair County Residents: To recieve the MMR vaccine contact Adair County Home Care and Public Health (117 NW Hayes Greenfield) at 641-743-6173. 

For more information about measles, visit www.idph.state.ia.us/idph_universalhelp/main.aspx?system=IdphEpiManual&context=Measles_factsheet.

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