North Texas

Health Officials Contact Four of Five People Exposed to Measles

Tarrant County Public Health Department officials say they have contacted four of five people exposed to the measles after confirming that a person who flew from India to North Texas Jan. 6 has the virus.

TCPH said the person flew on Emirates from India to DFW, with a stop in Dubai, on Jan. 6. The person's infectious period ended on Jan. 7.

The CDC helped TCPH identify five travelers from that flight and four of the five have been contacted.

Three of the five travelers provided doctors with their measles vaccination history and a fourth traveler is considered immune due to a previous measles infection.

The vaccination history of the fifth traveler is unknown and TCPH says it is making attempts to contact that person with phone calls and home visits.

At this time TCPH believes the risk of transmission to the public remains very low and no new cases have been reported in Tarrant County.

The Tarrant County resident had minimal contact with people once he arrived at DFW Airport. Health officials are monitoring his six family members, only one of whom was not vaccinated.

Symptoms of measles include fever, cough and sore throat that appear 10 to 14 days after exposure. A rash typically occurs a few days after initial symptoms appear. The incubation period, according to the CDC, lasts 7 to 21 days.

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned of the virus making a comeback in recent years because parents are relying on herd immunity from others instead of vaccinating their children.

Those who are current on vaccines do not need to worry about contracting the virus, officials said. Children receive their first vaccine at 1 year old and another round at about 5 years old.

This is the third straight year Tarrant County has had a measles case. One resident tested positive last July after attending a Wichita, Kan., softball tournament. And in fall 2013, 16 Tarrant County residents and five Denton County residents got the measles after a visitor, who had recently traveled overseas, visited a Newark-area mega church.

NBC 5's Chris Van Horne contributed to this report.

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