An urgent health alert has been issued for areas of northern New South Wales following a confirmed case of measles.
NSW Health issued the alert on Monday revealing an infected person had recently returned to Murwillumbah following overseas travel to Asia.
Primary and secondary school students who used the Singh Company school bus on February 5 to check for symptoms.
Residents who visited Murwillumbah Hospital between 1.15pm and 4pm on Friday and between 12.15pm and 8pm on Saturday should also be vigilant.
Early symptoms include a runny nose, cough, red and watery eyes and small white spots inside the cheeks before the characteristic rash appears on the head and spreads to the rest of the body.
Northern areas of New South Wales have been urged to watch out for measles symptoms after NSW Health confirmed a case who had returned from a holiday in Asia (file image)
The disease can be transmitted through the air to people close to someone infected if they cough or sneeze.
Although there is a measles vaccine, North Coast Regional Director of Population and Public Health Dr. Valeri Delpech said it was a good reminder to be fully vaccinated.
“This latest case is a reminder for everyone to check that they are protected against measles, which is very contagious,” said Dr. Delpech.
‘If you were born in 1966 or later, you must receive two doses of the measles vaccine to be fully vaccinated.
“It is particularly important to check that your vaccinations are up to date before traveling, as measles outbreaks are currently occurring in several regions of the world.”
Dr. Delpech warned that symptoms begin to appear between seven and 18 days after exposure and that the public should “remain alert if you have been exposed.”
“If they develop symptoms…call their primary care doctor or the emergency department ahead of time to make sure they don’t spend time in the waiting room with other patients,” he said.
NSW Health urged anyone at Murwillumbah Hospital (pictured) along the New South Wales-Queensland border on Friday and Saturday to check for symptoms.
The NSW Health alert also urges anyone traveling to measles-affected areas with a child aged between six and 12 months to vaccinate them before leaving.
“If you are unsure whether you have received two doses, it is best to get vaccinated, as additional doses are safe,” the alert reads.
“This is especially important before traveling.”
The Center for Disease Control lists India and Pakistan as two of the 10 countries with the highest cases of measles.
While parts of Asia have been hit by numerous outbreaks, African countries such as Yemen and Ethiopia also made the top 10 list.