Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS) has been notified of a passenger with measles flying from Australia’s Sunshine Coast to Auckland last Wednesday.
Public Health Medicine Specialist Dr Julia Peters says the New Zealander holidaying in Australia was not aware that he was infectious with measles on his homeward flight.
Other passengers on the plane should be vigilant for measles symptoms. These are a high fever, runny nose, cough and sore red eyes, followed by a rash.
“It can take 7-14 days to start experiencing symptoms. You are most at risk if you’re not immune to measles, either because you haven’t been vaccinated or you haven’t had the disease previously,” Dr Peters says.
Measles is an airborne disease that spreads easily through the air via coughing and sneezing.
“If you were on the flight and are unsure whether you’re immune to measles, talk to your doctor or call Healthline on 0800 611 116 for advice.
If you do start to develop symptoms that could be measles, also contact your doctor. Be sure to call ahead to prevent potentially infecting others in the waiting room,” Dr Peters says.