Associate Health Minister Jo Goodhew is again urging people to check whether they and their children are fully immunised against measles.
In recent weeks, 56 cases have been reported in Waikato, of which a significant number are associated with Fraser High School.
Between December 2013 and 13 June 2014, there have been 190 measles cases reported in New Zealand. Approximately one in five of these people have needed hospital treatment.
“Measles is highly infectious and can be life-threatening – but is easily preventable. By getting immunised you’re not only protecting yourself, but also helping to protect vulnerable members of the community,” says Mrs Goodhew.
“People who aren’t immunised and who’ve had contact with someone infected with measles will be advised to stay at home and away from all public places, school or work for 14 days.
“If you’re not sure whether you or your child is fully immunised, you should check with your GP.”
The measles vaccine is free for all New Zealand residents born from 1 January 1969, and two doses are required to be fully protected. Those born before the measles vaccine became available in 1969 are considered at lower risk because they were probably exposed to measles as a child.
Anyone who suspects they may have measles should call Healthline on 0800 611 116 for advice or contact their GP. It is important to call first before seeing your GP to prevent others in the waiting room becoming infected.
Further information can be found at www.health.govt.nz/measles or by calling 0800 IMMUNE.
Media contact: Angela Kenealy 021 220 0129