Measles Was Brought To New York Penn Station & Amtrak As The Outbreak Spreads Across 14 States
The measles outbreak in the United States is growing worse, and there may be a close call that's just way too close for comfort. Health officials announced on Saturday that measles is now in New York state — and the disease has already passed through New York City. In fact, the disease passed through one of the busiest transportation centers in America.
According to ABC News, a student with measles traveling to Bard College boarded an Amtrak train at Penn Station in Manhattan last Sunday. The unidentified student took the Niagara Falls-bound train to Rhinecliff, New York, about two hours outside New York City.
The New York State Department of Health released this warning on Friday to passengers who were on the Amtrak train and may have been exposed to the highly contagious disease:
Anyone traveling on Amtrak train #283, which left Penn Station in NYC at 1:20 p.m. and traveled to Albany and then on to Niagara Falls on January 25, 2015, and who is not immune to measles or not sure of their measles immunity, should contact their primary care physician if they become ill with fever. In order to prevent the spread of illness, DOH is advising individuals who may have been exposed and who have symptoms consistent with measles to call their health care providers or a local emergency room BEFORE going for care. This will help to prevent others at these facilities from being exposed to the illness.
The health department said the measles case was confirmed via laboratory testing on Friday. Bard College promptly notified its students and staff, and a measles vaccination clinic was held by the Dutchess County Department of Health for the campus community. Bard officials added to ABC News that the student has been isolated during his measles recovery.
According to the New York Department of Health, this is the third measles case in New York state in 2015. People who have been vaccinated are immune from the disease, and the health department urges residents to receive vaccinations as the measles outbreak continues to spread.
There have now been 84 cases of measles in 14 states since Jan. 1, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This latest outbreak of the disease, which is an airborne virus, can be traced back to the Disneyland amusement park in Anaheim, California. Health officials have said the disease may have come from overseas, either by a foreign traveler to Disneyland or an American who had recently returned from abroad. The officials added that as many as 67 out of the 84 cases could be linked back to the Disneyland outbreak.
The CDC states that 2014 had the highest number of measles cases in the United States since elimination of the disease was documented in 2000. Last year, there were over 600 reported cases of measles in 27 states. A majority of the patients were unvaccinated, according to CDC data.
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