Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has issued a state of emergency for a measles outbreak in the region, according to CNN.
A total of 32 cases of measles have been confirmed in the state.
“Measles is a highly contagious infectious disease that can be fatal in small children,” Inslee said in his proclamation on Friday.
He also said that these cases of measles can create “an extreme public health risk that may quickly spread to other counties.”
Measles is a contagious illness that spreads through coughing and sneezing. Symptoms include fever, body rash, stuffy nose, and red eyes, which may disappear without treatment in two to three weeks.
Of the 31 cases of measles reported in Clark County, Washington, on Saturday, there were 21 children infected by virus between the ages of 1 and 10 years old.
There was also one case of measles in King County, Washington, where Seattle is located. A man in his 50s, who recently traveled to Clark County, was reported to have the virus.
In Inslee’s emergency announcement, he asked that all agencies and state departments use all resources available to them and “do everything reasonably possible to assist affected areas.”
The Washington State Department of Health also issued an infectious disease Incident Management Structure to help manage the outbreak.
The Washington Military Department has also become involved. It said in a release that it is working to organize resources to help the health department and local officials with the effects of the measles.
County officials told CNN that last week an infected person went to a Portland Trail Blazers game in Oregon.
Other contagious people went to the Portland International Airport, as well as schools, stores, hospitals, churches, and restaurants located in Clark County and between the states of Washington and Oregon.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one or two of every 1,000 children with the measles dies from complications.
The CDC is urging people to get the measles vaccination as well as the mumps and rubella vaccination. According to the CDC, children should get two doses of the MMR vaccine at 12 to 15 months old and at 4 to 6 years old.
The measles was declared eliminated in 2000. It has recently become a health issue in many other states and is now a state of emergency in Washington.
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