CHINA : Taipei – People traveling over the Lunar New Year holiday to areas where measles are prevalent should take precautions and receive proper vaccine prior to their trip, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
There could be greater risk of measles infection due to more frequent travel over the holiday period, especially if traveling to countries where the disease is prevalent, which accounted for 60 percent of the 60,000 measles cases reported last year worldwide, according to the World Health Organization.
China had 40,000 cases in 2015, and the outbreak is expected to be at its peak through May 2016, the WHO said.
Malaysia, Mongolia and Kazakhstan each had some 1,000 cases, it said.
Travelers to affected areas should seek medical treatment if they develop symptoms such as fever, nasal inflammation or rash, the CDC said.
The measles virus infects the respiratory system, immune system and skin. Symptoms usually occur seven to 14 days after exposure to an infected person.
Most people without immunity to the virus will catch it if they share living space with an infected person and come into contact with fluids from an infected person’s nose and mouth, either directly or airborne. Widespread vaccination, especially at a young age, has mostly eradicated measles in developed countries.