Measles outbreak reaches baby in Highland County

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A case of the measles recently spread to an infant in Highland County, the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and the Highland County Health Department confirmed Monday.

Health officials believe the baby contracted the illness in May, when he and his family traveled to north central Ohio. The infant is less than six months old.

“Contracting measles is especially serious for infants younger than one year of age,” said ODH State Epidemiologist Dr. Mary DiOrio. “Parents with infants too young to be vaccinated should consider not traveling with them to areas where measles outbreaks are occurring.”

Six counties in the region have had at least one measles outbreak, according to spokeswoman ODH spokeswoman Melanie Amato. So far, Monday's confirmed case is Highland County's only measles report.

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The recent measles outbreak in Ohio is the largest outbreak in the United States since 1994, Amato said, so health officials recommend getting vaccinated. The measles-mumps-rubella vaccines 97 percent effective in preventing the illness.

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