A case of measles has been reported in Copenhagen. Peter Henrik Andersen, senior medical officer at Statens Serum Institut said that it was not clear where the child contracted the infection, but there is a risk that the infection has spread.
“Almost 200 people may have been exposed to the infection,” Andersen told DR Nyheder.
The reason that others may have been infected is that the child was placed in a waiting room, where they may have been sitting close to children who have not had the disease or been vaccinated. The measles virus is highly contagious, but so far none of the 200 have shown symptoms of infection.
Offering help to those not vaccinated
Health officials have been working to contain any possible outbreak. All of those that may have been exposed have been contacted and offered preventative treatment.
“We have worked hard to find out who among the group had not been vaccinated and offered them antibodies against the measles virus,” said Andersen. “About 50 people have been offered preventative treatment.”
Symptoms of measles are high fever, severe cold symptoms and, after a few days, the development of rash that spreads over the body.
“If you suspect your child could have measles, you should not just go to the doctor,” warned Andersen. “Call first so you can arrange to be seen at a time when you will not expose others.”
Many are not vaccinated against measles. There are about 100,000 children, adolescents, and young adults who are not protected against measles, because they did not receive the vaccine in the childhood immunisation program.
“There is a risk of large outbreaks in Denmark,” said Andersen. "There was one in 2011 when about 85 cases were reported.”