PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — There are now 65 confirmed cases of measles in Clark County.
Clark County says 47 cases are in children ages 1 to 10-years-old, 15 cases are in youth 11 to 18-years-old. There is one case in a person between 19 and 29-years-old and two cases in people 30 to 39-years-old.
Fifty-seven of the people who have been sick did not get the vaccine. In six of the cases, it’s unverified if they have been immunized and in two of the cases, the patients had 1 MMR vaccine.
In addition to the 65 confirmed cases, there is one suspected case under investigation.
Strain originated in Ukraine
KOIN 6 spoke to Dr. Tetyana Odarich on Thursday, who treats mainly Eastern European patients in her Happy Valley office. She said many patients continue to be against having their kids vaccinated because they are scared.
Health officials said the measles strain in Clark County originated in Ukraine.
Odarich says she recently came across a post on social media site Classmates, which is similar to Facebook. The video appears to be of a professional newscaster speaking Russian, claiming that several children were paralyzed one day after being vaccinated for measles. The video has 5 million views and no contact information.
Odarich said many of her patients come across similar information on the internet that is false. She hopes to educate her patients and says the recent outbreak has more and more of them changing their mind about vaccinations. She said much of the fear surrounding vaccines comes from a time many years ago when they weren’t kept at proper temperatures and were ineffective and made people sick.
Anyone who thinks they have the measles is asked not to go to any healthcare facility without calling ahead first to avoid exposing people in waiting rooms.
Measles is a highly contagious virus spread through the air. It can linger in a room up to two hours after someone with the virus has been there and you can catch it even before the sick person develops a rash.
The virus starts with a fever and can also cause a runny nose, cough, red eyes, ear infection, diarrhea and a rash of tiny red spots starting at the head and then spreading. It is especially dangerous for babies and young children.
The CDC said almost everyone who has not been vaccinated will get the virus if they are exposed.