AUSTIN (KXAN) — The first measles case was reported in San Antonio Wednesday bringing the state total to 10 this year, according to the Texas Department of Health and Human Services.
The patient was diagnosed through a lab test by the University Health System last week, a UHS spokes spokeswoman told the San Antonio Express-News. The person was reportedly being treated as an outpatient and had already left the clinic by the time the test results were confirmed.
This person’s diagnosis marks the tenth case of the highly contagious disease in Texas this year. The measles outbreak spans 11 states across the country and so far, there have been 206 cases reported in 2019. With 10 cases this year, Texas has already surpassed the number of measles cases of 2018 and 2017 combined.
In early February, Harris County officials confirmed three cases in the Houston-area, one reported in Galveston County and another in Montgomery County. A few days later, a sixth case was confirmed in Bell County.
Here are the cases reported in each county:
Measles pathogens travel through air and spread through coughing and sneezing. The virus is especially dangerous for babies and young children, health officials say. Symptoms include a high fever, runny nose, cough, red and watery eyes, sore throat and a rash.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention urges parents to ensure their children have received the Measles Mumps and Rubella Vaccine (MMR Vaccine). Officials recommend giving children the first dose between 12 to 15 months and the second dose at four to six years of age to ensure they are protected against measles.
“Measles is so contagious that if someone has it, 90 percent of the people around that person who are not immune will become infected,” according to Texas health officials. “The measles vaccine is very effective, about 97 percent after two doses. Children too young to be vaccinated or who have only had one dose of vaccine are more likely to get infected.”