Stokes Co., NC -- State health leaders are trying to contain a measles outbreak.
Health officials confirmed 19 cases of the outbreak in Stokes, Orange, and Polk counties. One of the cases was identified in a student at North Stokes High School according to the Stokes County Health Department. All students at the school have been vaccinated for the measles. School officials are working to make sure administrators, teachers, staff and visitors have proof they've had the MMR vaccine.
Scott Lenhart, Stokes County Health Director said the majority of the cases are associated with Prabhupada Village Community.
"We are cautioning Stokes County residents, especially those who are not immunized, to avoid visiting the Prabhupada Village Community until the outbreak is over," said Lenhart.
The Stokes County Health Department is advising anyone who thinks they've been exposed and are not vaccinated to be immunized within 72 hours of exposure to fight against developing the disease. The Measles Vaccination is free of charge and available at the Stokes County Health Department.
Lenhart also recommends that anyone, "not vaccinated should avoid any highly populated public events and gatherings in Stokes County during the outbreak."
Measles is highly contagious and is spread through coughing, sneezing, and contact with secretions from the nose, mouth, and throat of an infected person.
Symptoms include a fever over 101 F degrees, runny nose, watery red eyes, and a cough. A rash appears on the face and spreads over the body after a few days. If you've got measles you're considered contagious for four days before and after the rash appears.
Complications from the measles can include pneumonia, infection of the central nervous system, and could result in death. If you think you have the measles contact your doctor or health provider immediately.
For more information call the Stokes County Health Department at (336)593-2400.
WFMY News 2/Stokes County Health Department