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Urgent Public Health Alert – possible exposure to measles

The HSE Public Health team are currently carrying out public health actions following a confirmed case of measles in the Dublin and Midlands region.

As part of the work, they have issued a public health alert (as follows):

We wish to advise that members of the public may have been exposed to measles while:

• travelling on Bus Éireann Route 115 (Dublin-Mullingar/ Mullingar-Dublin) between Tuesday 30 January and Monday 5 February

• in a restaurant in Mullingar Business Park on Monday 29 January, between 2pm and 4.30pm.

Key messages

1. Be alert for symptoms of measles for 21 days from exposure

2. Make sure that you and your family are up to date with MMR vaccines

Action needed

1. Be aware of signs and symptoms of measles for 21 days from the time of possible exposure.

Measles is a highly infectious disease that can cause serious complications, particularly in children under one year of age, pregnant women, and the immunosuppressed. If you are in one of these groups, please seek advice from your GP.

If you travelled on the bus route or attended a restaurant in Mullingar Business Park during the dates and times above, it is especially important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of measles, which include:

• Cold-like symptoms such as a runny nose, sneezing and a cough

• Sore red eyes

• A temperature of 38 degrees Celsius or above

• Rash, which usually appears on head and neck first and spreads to rest of body

If you have those symptoms, seek medical advice.

Phone ahead prior to attending any healthcare setting to let them know that you have these symptoms, so they can make necessary arrangements.

2. Ensure you are vaccinated.

If you are not vaccinated against measles with two doses of MMR, please contact your GP as soon as possible during normal working hours to discuss whether you require vaccination. If you were born in Ireland before 1978 or had measles illness, you are unlikely to require vaccination, as you are probably immune.

The best way to protect yourself and those around you against measles is by MMR vaccination. This can be arranged with your GP.

Children should receive their first dose of MMR vaccine at one year of age and a second dose in junior infants at 4-5 years of age.

There is also a free catch-up MMR option via participating GPs for those who may have missed their vaccination when younger.

Further information about measles is available here.

This alert relates to the specific dates outlined above.

We are not asking people to avoid the bus route or any restaurant.

Issued by the Department of Public Health – HSE Dublin and Midlands