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Health Alert: DPH confirms a case of measles in a Metro Atlanta resident

The GA Department of Public Health just released that a case of measles has been confirmed in a metro Atlanta resident.  Please see the alert summary below and the guidance for healthcare providers.  Remember, measles is an immediately reportable disease.  Persons suspected of having measles should be immediately isolated as indicated below and Public Health should be notified.  Additional links to guidance can also be found on the health alert. The on-call Epidemiologist in Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale Counties can be reached 24/7 at 404-323-1910 or by calling 1-866-PUB-HLTH.   

Health Alert Summary: The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) has confirmed a measles case in a metro Atlanta resident. While infectious, the case attended school and sought medical care from local healthcare providers. DPH urges healthcare providers to notify Public Health immediately if you suspect measles in a patient from now until November 29. DPH urges heightened awareness for patients with measles. Guidance for Healthcare Professionals:

  • Healthcare providers should consider measles in the initial differential diagnosis of patients presenting with the following symptoms, particularly those who have a history of recent international or domestic travel, exposure to international travelers, or exposure to a possible measles case:
    • Fever ≥101˚F (38.3˚C) AND
    • Generalized maculopapular rash lasting > 3 days AND
    • Cough, runny nose, or conjunctivitis
  • Isolate persons with suspect measles IMMEDIATELY (negative pressure room, if available). Patients should be managed in a manner that prevents disease spread in the healthcare setting https://www.cdc.gov/infectioncontrol/pdf/guidelines/isolation-guidelines-H.pdf
  • Report suspect cases of measles IMMEDIATELY by calling either the District Health Office or the GA DPH at 404-657-2588 (during business hours), or 1-866-PUB-HLTH after hours or weekends. Do not await laboratory results before reporting.
  • Obtain appropriate clinical specimens. Laboratory testing for measles is required for confirmation. This includes two throat swabs and urine for measles PCR and culture, and blood for serology testing. Detailed specimen collection and shipping guidelines are available at the DPH measles website. DPH will assist in coordinating measles testing at the Georgia Public Health Laboratory.
  • Ensure patients are up-to-date on their vaccinations according to CDC’s recommended schedules for children and adults.

Please contact our office if you have any questions or Ebony Thomas, the DPH Vaccine Preventable Epidemiologist.  Her contact information can be found at the bottom of the health alert from DPH