U.S. State Declares State of Emergency As Extremely Contagious Disease Spreads to Surrounding States

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January 28, 2019Jan 28, 2019

The Governor of Washington States has declared a state go emergency in the state after 35 confirmed cases of measles, reported CNN

As of Sunday, there are 35 confirmed cases of measles in the state of Washington. Gov. Jay Inslee issued a statement on Friday.

"Measles is a highly contagious infectious disease that can be fatal in small children," Inslee said in his proclamation on Friday, adding that these cases create "an extreme public health risk that may quickly spread to other counties."

Thirty-four of those cases occurred in Clark County, which sits on the state's southern border. The county, which includes Vancouver, is just across the Columbia River from Portland, Oregon.

Officials said 30 of the cases involved people who have not had a measles immunization. Of the 34 cases, 24 are children between age 1 and 10. There are also nine suspected cases in Clark County.

There is also one case in King County, which includes Seattle. The man in his 50s in King County has a "suspected case." He had recently traveled to Clark County.

Inslee's proclamation allows agencies and departments to use state resources and "do everything reasonably possible to assist affected areas."

"Last week, a person infected with measles attended a Portland Trail Blazers home game in Oregon. Contagious people also went to Portland International Airport, as well as to hospitals, schools, stores, churches, and restaurants across Washington's Clark County and the two-state region," county officials said.

Measles is a contagious virus that spreads through the air through coughing and sneezing. Symptoms include a high fever, rash all over the body, stuffy nose, and red eyes. They typically resolve without treatment within two or three weeks. One or two of every 1,000 children who get measles will die from complications, according to the US Centers for Disease.