Measles outbreak hits Wellington

Last updated 14:45 29/09/2011

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A measles outbreak in Auckland has spread to Wellington.

Regional Public Health has confirmed one case of measles in the region.

The case links to an infected passenger who flew from Auckland to Wellington earlier this month, a spokeswoman said.

Measles is a highly infectious disease that can have serious complications such as ear infection, pneumonia and brain damage. It is potentially fatal.

Early symptoms are fever, runny nose, cough, sore red eyes and white spots on the inside of the mouth.

There have been 179 confirmed cases of measles in Auckland since May 30 - 11 in the past week - and 26 people have been admitted to hospital.

A passenger with the early, infectious stages of measles was on Jetstar flight JQ265 from Auckland to Wellington on September 13 and Air New Zealand flight NZ446 from Wellington to Auckland on September 15.

Contact tracing for the Auckland cases has been completed and Regional Public Health did not expect other cases to arise with links to those flights.

Contact tracing for the case in the Wellington region had begun, and more information about the movements of the infected person should be available tomorrow, the spokeswoman said.

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- The Dominion Post

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