Measles – key information for schools in Hawke’s Bay.

There is currently a large national outbreak of measles and a high chance that we will see cases in Hawke’s Bay over the next few months.

There have been three confirmed cases in Hawke’s Bay to date, and over 1000 cases notified across New Zealand this year.

Hawke’s Bay DHB is asking all schools to be prepared in order to lessen the impact of measles on the Hawke’s Bay community.

Be prepared for measles:

·       Make sure that all staff members have documented evidence of immunity. Requesting evidence of immunity from your staff now may help avoid disruption to your school in the event of a confirmed measles case.

o  People are considered immune from measles if they were born before 1969 or have documented evidence of having received 2 doses of the Measles Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccination.

o  We strongly recommend staff born after 1969, who have not had at least one MMR vaccination, to get immunised at their GP practice.

·       Check your Immunisation Register is up-to-date. If there is a case of measles in your school, the public health team will access this to determine which students may be susceptible to measles.

 ·       Immunisation is the best protection. Thank you for continuing to encourage parents/caregivers to check that their children are fully immunised.  Parents/caregivers of children who are not fully immunised should be encouraged to arrange immunisation through their GP practice. 

In the event of a confirmed measles case connected to your school, Hawke’s Bay Public Health services will work with you to identify any staff or children who may have been exposed to someone with measles, and take measures that prevent further spread.

More information, including FAQs about the MMR vaccination, can be found at:

·       https://www.immune.org.nz

·       https://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/conditions-and-treatments/diseases-and-illnesses/measles

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