Measles Total Increases by 2 Even as Health Officials See Slowdown

Measles Total Increases by 2 Even as Health Officials See Slowdown Photo: KSTP

May 31, 2017 02:03 PM

Minnesota health officials are hoping the state's measles outbreak is nearing its end as the number of new cases held steady for the last 13 days.

The Minnesota Department of Health's daily tally had remained steady at 68 for two weeks, though Wednesday afternoon the department's website showed that total had increased by two.

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RELATED: Measles Total Drops By 1 in Minnesota

That brings the total number of cases diagnosed in the state to 70 with 61 in Hennepin County, three in Ramsey County, four in Crow Wing County and two in Le Sueur County.

Sixty-six of those cases have come in individuals confirmed to have been unvaccinated. One had one dose of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine. Three had two doses.

Sixty-seven cases have come in children ages 0 to 17 years old. Three of those diagnosed have been adults. Fifty-nine of the cases have come in the Somali Minnesotan community. Seven of the cases have come in those with a race/ethnicity listed as White/Non-Hispanic. Three have come in those listed as White/Hispanic. One case is unknown/pending when it comes to race/ethnicity.

RELATED: Three New Measles Cases in Hennepin County

It remains the worst outbreak in Minnesota since 1990 when 460 cases were diagnosed, leading to three fatalities.

And even if the pace seems to have slowed down, health officials are still urging caution and recommending vaccinations.

The state has to go through two full incubation periods that each last 21 days without any positive cases before the outbreak can be declared over.

RELATED: Measles Outbreak Total Hits 66 in Minnesota

Symptoms of measles include a high fever, cough, runny nose and watery eyes followed by a rash. It is highly contagious and spreads easily by coughing, sneezing or even being in the same room with someone who has measles.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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Frank Rajkowski

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