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Aussie Travelers Urged To Check Measles Vaccination Records Following New Cases

Australians planning to travel overseas are urged to maintain their vaccination status as two new measles cases have emerged in NSW due to returning travellers from Bali.

Measles is rare in Australia but remains a common illness in locations popular with Australians, such as Indonesia, India, the Philippines, Pakistan, and Thailand.

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According to the NSW Health Department, the Middle East, Africa, parts of Europe and the UK are also considered at higher risk for measles.

Earlier this month, NSW’s Mid North Coast residents were highly exposed to the virus after one individual carrying measles participated in a sequence of events.

These included attending two junior AFL games held in Coffs Harbour and Woolgoolga. 

Dr Christine Selvey, Director of Communicable Diseases Branch NSW Health, said measles is “highly infectious”.

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“Anyone who is not immune is at risk of developing the disease if they are exposed,” Dr Selvey said.

“Measles can be very severe, and people with measles often require hospitalisation. However, it is almost completely preventable through vaccination.”

Dr Selvey says symptoms of measles include fever, sore eyes and cough, followed three or four days later by a red, blotchy rash spreading from the head and neck to the rest of the body.

“Travellers who develop symptoms should call ahead to their GP or Emergency Department to ensure they don’t wait in the waiting room with other patients.”

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