FALSE ALARM: Individual from Burleigh County Thought to have Measles Tests Negative

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The ND Department of Health received test results from the CDC that show the individual thought to have measles in Burleigh County was a false alarm. The test results came back negative for measles.

Therefore, the NDDoH has determined that the threat of measles for this specific situation to be over. Children and employees who are currently being excluded from school and other activities, may return to school tomorrow, September 7, 2018. Other individuals contacted by the NDDoH about a potential exposure no longer need to watch for symptoms of measles

The initial test result for the measles were positive. Per protocol, the Health Department sent samples to the CDC for additional testing and confirmation, which came back negative.

Laboratory tests can sometimes produce false positives; however, this is rare.

“Measles is one of the most contagious diseases in the world,” said Molly Howell, immunization program manager for the NDDoH. “We acted quickly and appropriately based on the testing and information that we had on hand at the time to prevent the spread of measles in the community. We appreciate the cooperation of this individual, schools and community members in response to this situation.”

Measles cases are occurring in the United States and around the World. All children are recommended to be vaccinated against measles at ages 12 to 15 months and 4 to 6 years. Measles is included in a combination vaccine with mumps and rubella (known as MMR vaccine). All adults born in 1957 or later should have at least one dose of MMR vaccine. All health care workers should have two doses of MMR vaccine.

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