A patient who contracted measles overseas, but wasn't diagnosed until days after coming to the United States, could have potentially exposed people to the disease, health officials said.
The patient was admitted to Children's National Medical Center in Washington on May 13 and isolated before being diagnosed with the disease six days later. The patient, who has since recovered, visited several places in Prince George's County between May 8 and the admission.
Most people get vaccinated for measles, but some choose not to and could be at risk if they were exposed. Health officials from the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the health departments in Prince George's County and Washington said they wanted to get the word out to people "out of an abundance of caution."
The measles virus is highly contagious to people who have not gotten the vaccine. It spreads through the air through coughing and sneezing.
Measles is a common disease in many parts of the world, with 36 cases of measles per 1 million people reported each year. About 134,200 die from it. Most of the cases in the United States are contracted by people who travel internationally.
Health officials said the patient visited several public buildings including:
●May 8 – The Department of Social Services Building at 6110 Allentown Road in Suitland.
●May 8 – The Social Security Building at 425 Brightseat Road in Hyattsville from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
● May 9 and May 10 — Prince George's Hospital Center Emergency Department in Cheverly from 8 p.m. to May 10 at 2 a.m. The measles patient rode the No. 12 public transit bus to and from Prince George's Hospital Center.
● May 11 — Prince George's Hospital Center Emergency Department from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.