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Ed Day, Rockland County Executive

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 7, 2019
Contact: John Lyon, Director of Strategic Communications (845) 638-5645
                 Patricia Schnabel Ruppert, D.O., M.P.H., CPE, DABFM, FAAFP (845) 364-2512

HEALTH DEPARTMENT NOTIFYING RESIDENTS OF POSSIBLE MEASLES EXPOSURE AT PHARMACY PLUS IN SPRING VALLEY ON MAY 28


Measles cases continue to climb in Rockland – Health Dept. offers free measles vaccine clinics

NEW CITY, NY - - With the continued measles outbreak in Rockland, County Health Commissioner Dr. Patricia Schnabel Ruppert reminds residents of the importance of getting vaccinated. As of June 7, there are 259 confirmed reported cases of measles in the county since the outbreak began in October 2018.

Measles is one of the most contagious viruses on earth; 90% of unvaccinated people exposed to the virus become infected. You can catch measles just by being in a room where a person with measles has been, up to 2 hours after that person is gone. You can catch measles from an infected person even before they have a measles rash. Due to Rockland County's small geographic size, exposure to the measles may occur anywhere in Rockland.

Anyone who visited the following location at the following time may have been exposed to measles:
• Pharmacy Plus, located at 728 N. Main Street, Spring Valley, NY 10977 on Tuesday, May 28 from 1-2 pm, with a risk of exposure until 4 pm.

These times reflect the period that the infected individuals were in this area and a two-hour period after they left the area, because the virus remains in the air and on surfaces for up to two hours. If you were present at this location during these times, especially if you are in any of the following high-risk groups, contact your health care provider by phone right away (call before going for care):
• Pregnant
• A child under 6 months of age
• Immunocompromised or immunosuppressed (when your body can't fight disease)
• Have not been vaccinated against the measles
• Were born before 1957 and are immunosuppressed

"Being up-to-date with your measles vaccination is the best way to help protect yourself, your family, and the community, especially those who cannot get vaccinated because they are too young or have specific health conditions," said Dr. Ruppert. Since the outbreak began, the Health Department together with partners such as Refuah Health Center and private pediatricians and family doctors have administered over 22,000 doses of MMR vaccine.

Free MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccines are available at the Rockland County Department of Health, Building A, Exhibition Hall (lobby area), located at 50 Sanatorium Road in Pomona at the following dates and times. No appointments are needed.
• Monday, June 10, from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Free MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccines are also available at the Rockland County Department of Health, Building A, second floor clinic area, located at 50 Sanatorium Road in Pomona at the following dates and times. No appointments are needed.
• Monday, June 17 and June 24 from 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
• Tuesday, June 11, June 18, and June 25 from 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
• Wednesday, June 19 and June 26 from 9:00 am -11:30 am
• Thursday, June 13, June 20, and June 27 from 9:00 am - 11:30 am
• Friday, June 21 and June 28 from 9:00 am -11:30 am

The Health Department is actively working to contain the further spread of measles. If you are ill with a fever, rash, or conjunctivitis (red watery eyes), please help protect our community - stay home, do not have visitors, and do not go out in public. If you have symptoms consistent with measles, contact your health care provider, a local clinic, or a local emergency department before going for care. This will help prevent others at these facilities from being exposed to the illness.

"We urge everyone to follow the Health Department's advice - get vaccinated against the measles, and if you are sick with measles - stay home. We are making progress against this dangerous disease but this outbreak is still a public health emergency and we need the entire community's help to end it," said County Executive Ed Day.

The Health Department is asking all health care providers to immediately report all cases of suspect measles to the Rockland County Department of Health Communicable Disease Program staff by calling (845) 364-2997 during normal business hours, or (845) 364-8600 after hours/weekends. Health Care Providers can also call this number for additional information.

Residents can get more information about measles by visiting https://bit.ly/2zh4v1G and by calling the New York State Department of Health toll free Measles Information Line at (888) 364-4837.