First measles case confirmed in Vermont since 2018

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NEWPORT — The Vermont Department of Health has confirmed a case of measles in an individual involved in an international group program.

This marks the first confirmed case of the disease in Vermont since 2018. The department reported that the other 25 members of the group had been exposed to measles prior to their arrival in Vermont, although most are believed to be immune.

The exposure was first brought to the attention of Vermont health officials on April 10 by the Georgia Department of Public Health, following a measles diagnosis in a traveler on an international flight to Atlanta, which the group had been on.

In response, Vermont public health officials issued isolation guidance to the group to minimize public exposure and have been actively monitoring and advising the group members remaining in Vermont.

The risk to the general public in Vermont is considered low. However, potential exposure could have occurred at the Hampton Inn in Colchester.

The Health Department has advised anyone who was present at the hotel on April 17 before 3:45 p.m. to check their measles immunity status and remain vigilant for symptoms through May 8. Hampton Inn management is cooperating fully with the health authorities to contact guests and provide necessary information. There is no continued risk at the hotel.

Measles is an extremely contagious virus that manifests as a respiratory illness and is preventable almost entirely through vaccination.

Symptoms include a high fever, cough, runny nose, watery eyes, and a rash that typically starts on the face and spreads.

The virus can linger in the air for up to two hours after the infected person has left, and it can be spread from about four days before to four days after the rash appears.

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