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Oakland County Health issues school exclusion info regarding measles outbreak

School exclusions during Oakland County measles outbreak

The Oakland County Health Division is working with schools and daycares to proactively identify unvaccinated or under-vaccinated students who are at greatest risk of contracting measles. The Michigan Public Health Code Act 386 of 1978 allows school and/or local health department officials to exclude anyone who has a communicable disease or was exposed to the communicable disease and isn’t fully vaccinated against it.

“By Michigan law, all students are required to be immunized with two doses of Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) vaccine or have evidence of having contracted measles,” said Leigh-Anne Stafford, health officer for Oakland County. “School exclusion policies will be enforced as necessary to protect the public’s health.”

The following can help prevent your child’s school exclusion related to measles:

  • Review your child’s vaccination/medical history to ensure they have received two doses of Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) vaccine and the documentation is on file at school.
  • If your child is not up-to-date on MMR vaccine, have them vaccinated. 

“If your child is not up-to-date on MMR vaccine and a measles exposure occurs at their school or daycare, they will be excluded for up to 21 days from the date of the measles exposure,” Stafford said. “This is how long it may take for measles symptoms to appear after someone is exposed.”

To view the updated list of confirmed exposure locations, visit www.oakgov.com/health. Individuals who visited any of these locations on the dates and times listed were at risk of being exposed to measles. Vaccination is available and effective within 72 hours of exposure.

High-risk individuals can receive immune-globulin (Ig) treatment within six days of exposure. High-risk individuals include those who are unvaccinated or unsure about vaccination status, pregnant women and those who are immune-compromised such as a weakened immune system due to illness or diseases like HIV, malnutrition, and/or medications.  

If symptoms develop, call ahead before you visit your doctor or emergency room so they can take precautions to prevent exposure to other individuals.

Measles is a highly contagious, vaccine-preventable disease that is spread by direct person-to-person contact, and through the air. The virus can live for up to two hours in the air where the infected person was present. Symptoms of measles usually begin 7-14 days after exposure, but can appear up to 21 days after exposure and may include:

  • High fever (may spike to over 104˚F)
  • Cough
  • Runny nose
  • Red, watery eyes (conjunctivitis)
  • Tiny white spots on the inner cheeks, gums, and roof of the mouth (Koplik Spots) 2-3 days after symptoms begin
  • A rash that is red, raised, blotchy; usually starts on face, spreads to trunk, arms, and legs 3-5 days after symptoms begin

For more information about measles, visit www.oakgov.com/health or call Nurse on Call at 800-848- 5533, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. For up-to-date public health information, follow @publichealthOC on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.