Public health officials on Friday announced a second confirmed case of the measles in Latah County.
The first measles case — the first in Idaho since 2001 — was reported Wednesday and involved a child too young to be immunized. The second case involves a family member of the first child who was partially immunized due to age, according to a news release from Public Health-Idaho North Central District.
The second individual, like the first, was exposed to measles while traveling internationally, according to the release. There has been no spread of the virus to individuals in the general public in Latah County or the state at this time, according to health officials.
PH-INCD continues to collaborate with Gritman Medical Center and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare to respond and control any additional transmission.
Officials on Friday identified Trinity Reformed Church in Moscow as a second measles public exposure location, according to the district’s website. Anyone at the church from 9:15 a.m. to 2 p.m. on May 26 could have been exposed to measles. The church is at 101 E. Palouse River Drive.
In addition, anyone at Gritman Medical Center between 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. May 31 for laboratory or diagnostic imaging services could have been exposed to the virus.
According to a Gritman news release, a patient came into the hospital May 31 and staff recognized the potential symptoms associated with measles. Gritman advises anyone who believes they or someone they know has measles to self-quarantine at home to prevent spreading the virus. They should not go to public spaces or interact with others, and should call a doctor or clinic to get instructions.
According to PH-INCD, symptoms of measles include fever, dry cough, runny nose, sore throat and red, watery eyes, followed by a rash. Symptoms begin 7 to 21 days after exposure. Measles is preventable with vaccination.
More information on Public Health’s measles investigation and answers to frequently asked questions can be found at idahopublichealth.com/district-2/measles. PH-INCD can be contacted at (208) 748-0400 and the department of health and welfare can be reached at (208) 334-0668.
MEASLES VACCINATION RATES FOR IDAHO
Most people in Latah County have been immunized against measles. But some groups of people cannot be vaccinated, such as infants under 12 months of age, and people with compromised immune systems.
For those groups to be protected from the virus, public health experts say that about 93-95 percent of an area’s population would have to be immunized against measles — either through a vaccine or by surviving the illness.
The Idaho Statesman has found that schools in some parts of Idaho have vaccination rates that likely reach that “herd immunity” level, including in the Treasure Valley. But some parts of North Idaho don’t.
Statesman reporter Audrey Dutton contributed.