Two visitors from Europe are suspected of falling ill with measles in Ventura County, prompting public health officials to remind the public to get vaccinated.
Health authorities said one of the visitors was confirmed to have measles, and the other is suspected of contracting the highly contagious disease. The cases were in eastern Ventura County, which borders Los Angeles County.
The confirmation of measles comes as cases of the disease have been on the rise in the United States, despite it being virtually eradicated in this country in 2000. Over a nine-month period in 2011, there were 28 reported cases of measles in California–the highest in a decade.
Public health officials are concerned about the return of measles as more parents forgo vaccinations for their children. Measles, transmitted through coughing and sneezing, can cause ear infections, pneumonia, diarrhea, brain injuries and death. Cases can quickly spread in schools and communities, especially in areas with a high concentration of children who haven’t been vaccinated.
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