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WellSpan Health reports confirmed case of measles in York County

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WellSpan Health physician discusses her diagnosis as 2nd measles case in York County

Dr. Jennifer McCabe was fully vaccinated; she shares her story and why she still supports vaccinations

September 16, 2019

 

Read the Video Transcript:

My name is Dr. Jennifer McCabe, and I am a family medicine physician with WellSpan Health. As many now know, the Pennsylvania Department of Health has confirmed a second case of measles in York County.

I am that second confirmed case.

I’ve decided to disclose my measles diagnosis, because I believe public education regarding this virus is in the best interest of our community. First and foremost, it’s absolutely critical that everyone who CAN be vaccinated with the MMR vaccine gets vaccinated – not just to protect yourself, but to protect everyone around you – especially very young children and those who are immunocompromised.

The vaccine is very safe and very effective. Two doses of the MMR – which is what the CDC recommends – is 97 percent effective, while one dose is 93 percent effective in preventing measles. That means there will always be a very small percentage of people for whom the vaccine may not be effective. And I am one of those people.

I was vaccinated with the MMR vaccine twice and have tested positive for presumed immunity to measles at least three times in the past 20 years – most recently within the past two days.

Two weeks ago, when the first York County measles patient was diagnosed, I received an immunization screening that confirmed that I was presumed immune from the measles. That is why I was able to continue seeing patients.

WellSpan and I followed all the CDC and Department of Health guidelines. Unfortunately, I still got the measles. Even after I tested positive for the measles, I took another blood screening to test my immunity. The results still showed that I was presumed to be immune.

My symptoms thankfully are not severe, and that’s likely because I was vaccinated. I have not had a fever and I’m not experiencing the red, itchy eyes or cough that typically come with the measles. I have not left my home since I began having symptoms. We caught this very, very early.

I did not treat any patients while I was experiencing symptoms.

My vaccinations didn’t prevent me from getting the measles, but it did lessen the symptoms and likely made me less contagious to the community.

WellSpan is working closely with the Pennsylvania Department of Health to notify anybody who may have been exposed as a precaution. The Department of Health says that those with presumed immunity are not at risk, and that includes my family who are fully vaccinated and do not have symptoms, and my coworkers.

In fact, if everyone gets vaccinated, the likelihood that people like me would be exposed becomes very small.

Please – Protect yourselves, your loved ones and your community. Get vaccinated and educate yourself. Thank you.


WellSpan Health coordinating with Pennsylvania Department of Health in response to two measles cases in York  County

September 15, 2019

The Pennsylvania Department of Health is alerting the public of a second suspected case of the measles in York County in addition to the confirmed case that was reported on August 31st.  Some of the exposure sites include the following WellSpan Health locations:

WellSpan Stony Brook Health Center, 4222 E. Market St., Lincoln Hwy. York, PA on

  • Sept. 9 from 9:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • Sept. 10 from 7:15 a.m. to 6:45 p.m.
  • Sept. 11 from 7:15 a.m. to 1:45 p.m.
  • Sept 12 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

If you were at, or near, any of the locations listed during the above time periods, please call the WellSpan Health Measles Exposure Hotline toll free at 1-855-851-3641 as soon as possible to speak with a Registered Nurse.

Complete details from the Pennsylvania Department of Health, including additional exposure sites.


 WellSpan urges those with measles concerns to call hotline

September 5, 2019

YORK, Pa. – WellSpan Health is urging its patients who are experiencing measles symptoms, or who are concerned about a possible exposure, to call a toll-free WellSpan hotline rather than go to a care facility, to reduce the chance of additional exposures in the wake of a confirmed positive case of measles in the region.

A confirmed case of measles was found in an individual who was treated at two WellSpan facilities in York between Aug. 26 and 29. The individual also was at a Fuddrucker’s restaurant in York Aug. 22 and attended a performance at Hershey Theatre Aug. 23. No new cases of measles have been identified from exposure to the original confirmed case at this time.

The WellSpan Measles Exposure Hotline number is 1-855-851-3641. The hotline is currently staffed seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. by registered nurses, who will direct callers to the appropriate location for care.

Individuals who believe they may have been exposed, are experiencing symptoms, and are not WellSpan patients are encouraged to contact the Pa. Department of Health’s toll-free hotline at 1-877-PA-HEALTH. Individuals who have received the measles, mumps and rubella vaccination series should be safe from exposure.

Measles is a highly contagious but vaccine-preventable disease that spreads through coughing, sneezing or other contact with the mucus or saliva of an infected person. Symptoms typically appear one to three weeks after an exposure and include rash, high fever, cough and red, watery eyes.

However, anyone who was inside the impacted locations during the time frames announced by the Pa. Department of Health last week may have been exposed. Because measles is transmitted by air, the infection risk vanishes two hours after a patient leaves a building.

There is no current risk of infection at any of the locations where the confirmed case visited, including the two WellSpan care locations – WellSpan Stony Brook Health Center at 4222 E. Market St., Lincoln Highway in York; and WellSpan York Hospital at 1001 S. George St. in York. All WellSpan care locations continue their normal operations.

WellSpan Health agrees with the CDC recommendations that children and adults receive immunizations from preventable diseases, such as the measles. For the most current information on recommended immunizations for children and adults, visit the CDC website.

For more information about WellSpan Health’s response to this measles exposure, review our list of Frequently Asked Questions.


WellSpan Health reports confirmed case of measles in York County

August 31, 2019

YORK, Pa. – WellSpan Health is notifying its patients, staff and neighbors in York County of a confirmed positive case of measles in an individual who was treated at two WellSpan facilities in York between Aug. 26 and Aug. 29.

The confirmed case involves a patient who received care at WellSpan Stony Brook Health Center on Aug. 26, 28 and 29. The Stony Brook facility houses WellSpan Family Medicine – Stony Brook, WellSpan OB/GYN – Stony Brook, and WellSpan Lab Services – Stony Brook. This patient also received care at the WellSpan York Hospital Emergency, Lab and Imaging departments on Aug. 26 and 29.

Because measles is transmitted by air, the infection risk vanishes two hours after a patient leaves a building. There is no current risk of infection at any of these locations.

WellSpan York Hospital and all medical services and practices at WellSpan’s Stony Brook location continue their normal operations.

However, anyone who was inside these locations at the times list below may have been exposed. The locations and times when individuals may have been exposed include:

  • WellSpan Stony Brook Health Center, 4222 E. Market St., Lincoln Hwy. York, Pa., on Aug. 26 from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
  • WellSpan York Hospital, 1001 S. George St., York, Pa., on Aug. 26:
    - in the proximity of the Lab from 1:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.
    - in the proximity of the Imaging Department from 1:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
    - in the proximity of the Emergency Department from 6:15 p.m. to 1:45 a.m. Aug. 27
    - in the proximity of the Imaging Department from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • WellSpan Stony Brook Health Center, 4222 E. Market St., Lincoln Hwy. York, Pa., on Aug. 28 from 10:45 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • WellSpan Stony Brook Health Center, 4222 E. Market St., Lincoln Hwy. York, Pa., on Aug. 29 from 9:50 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • WellSpan York Hospital, 1001 S. George St., York, Pa., on Aug. 29 in the proximity of the Emergency Department from 11:15 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.

If you were at, or near, any of the locations listed above during the above time periods, please call the WellSpan Health Measles Exposure Hotline at 717-812-5330 or toll free at 1-855-851-3641 as soon as possible to speak with a Registered Nurse. The hotline is currently staffed seven days a week. If you are experiencing symptoms of measles, please contact the Pa. Department of Health’s toll-free hotline at 1-877-PA-HEALTH. Individuals who have received the Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccination series should be safe from exposure.

According to the Pa. Department of Health, this is the 14th confirmed case of measles in Pennsylvania in 2019, and more than 1,200 cases have been reported in the United States this year.

Measles is a highly contagious but vaccine-preventable disease that spreads through coughing, sneezing or other contact with the mucus or saliva of an infected person. Symptoms typically appear 1 to 3 weeks after exposure and include: rash; high fever; cough; and red, watery eyes.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) those most at-risk are:

  • Infants less than one year of age who are too young to have received the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine;
  • Individuals who refused vaccination; and
  • Individuals from parts of the world where there is low vaccination coverage or circulating measles.

Additionally, even if you were vaccinated, you may still be at risk if you were vaccinated with an inactivated vaccine, which was used from 1963 through 1967, and have not been revaccinated; or you were born after 1957 and have only received one dose of MMR vaccine.

WellSpan Health agrees with the CDC recommendations that children and adults receive immunizations from preventable diseases, such as the measles. For the most current information on recommended immunizations for children and adults, visit www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/default.htm.

For more information about measles, visit www.health.pa.gov or www.cdc.gov.