RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com) — Riverside County Department of Public Health officials confirmed Friday that a student at Amelia Earhart Middle School contracted the measles.
The student is no longer infectious, but six other possibly unvaccinated students are being kept out of school until March 4, officials said.
“The student is fine now, no longer contagious and cleared to return to school,” county communicable diseases specialist Barbara Cole said. “Right now, we’re monitoring six other students who had no proof of immunization or vaccination (against measles).”
County staff are not certain how the student came down with measles, and will not disclose whether the student was vaccinated because of privacy laws.
Riverside County officials say the case at Earhart is the only one that’s been reported at Riverside Unified School District. It’s unusual for students to contract measles, but officials say it does happen periodically.
“Parents who don’t have their kids vaccinated should be the ones worried about it,” parent Charlotte Mitchell said.
The source of the infection was not immediately known, Cole said, adding that it was most likely not related to the December measles outbreak at Disneyland that has impacted dozens of people in California and other states.
According to Cole, eight measles cases — three adults and five children — have been confirmed so far this year countywide. In January, a Palm Desert High School student was diagnosed with measles, and the Department of Public Health barred 70 youths with no proof of vaccination from returning to school for a week to ensure there were no additional infections.
A person can be infectious with measles for nine days, according to health officials. The respiratory disease, which can be spread through the air, generally begins with fever, cough, runny nose and red watery eyes. Within three days, a red rash appears, usually on the face, then reaching the rest of the body.
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