Visitors warned Disneyland guest last week had measles

Visitors warned Disneyland guest last week had measles
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Disneyland visitors are being warned that they could have contracted measles from a guest who visited the park last week.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said in a release that visitors to Disneyland may have been exposed to measles if they were in the park on Oct. 16 between 9:15 a.m. and 8:35 p.m. The infected resident of the county also visited a Starbucks in west Los Angeles, and county officials are cautioning people who were there between 7:50 a.m. and 10 a.m.

The county department said it is searching for others who may be at risk of being infected. People at those locations could develop measles up to 21 days after being exposed. Those who develop symptoms are encouraged to stay at home, according to the release.

The same person visited a different Starbucks in LA on Oct. 15 between 7:20 and 9:35 a.m. and Factor's Famous Deli on Oct. 17 between 5:30 and 8 p.m., an updated release said Wednesday evening.

The department is urging people who may have been exposed to review their immunization records, saying those who have not had measles and have not had the vaccine should meet with a health professional to get the vaccine. 

The county has experienced 19 measles cases among residents and an additional 11 nonresident cases, excluding Long Beach and Pasadena, who report their own cases. Most of these cases were for people who did not get the vaccination or could not remember if they did.

“For those who are not protected, measles is a highly contagious and potentially severe disease that initially causes fever, cough, red, watery eyes, and, finally, a rash,” Los Angeles County health officer Muntu Davis said in the release. “Measles is spread by air and by direct contact even before you know have it.”

The Hill reached out to the county’s Department of Public Health and Disneyland for comment. 

This is not the first time the park's visitors have been at risk for measles. Two months ago, an infected teenager from New Zealand visited there, and in 2014 a measles outbreak occurred after an infected visitor attended the park, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The U.S. has experienced one of the worst outbreaks of measles in the past two decades as cases were reported in 31 states, a majority of which were in New York City and New York state. These outbreaks have threatened the country’s elimination status that was announced in 2000.