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Ten cases of measles confirmed in Arizona

Posted at 7:34 PM, May 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-29 14:41:39-04

State and county officials have confirmed ten cases of measles in Arizona, according to a joint press release from the Arizona Department of Health Services, Maricopa County Department of Public Health and Pinal County Public Health Services District.

One of the cases may have exposed the public at Harrah's Ak-Chin Casino, 15406 North Maricopa Road in Maricopa from 6 p.m on May 21. until 2 a.m. on May 22.

As well, exposure may have happened at the Arco AM/PM store on 2245 East Florence Boulevard in Casa Grande from 8:30 a.m. until 11 a.m. on May 22.

Officials say the other case did not have exposure to other public places and does not pose a risk to the public. 

The Arizona Department of Health Services and Pinal County Public Health Services have confirmed eight additional measles cases stemming from the outbreak at the Eloy Detention Center. 

As of May 29 the information on public exposure for the eight additional cases of measles includes multiple visits to the Apostolic Assembly-The Faith at 424 East Frontier Street in Eloy on Sunday, May 15 from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m., Monday, May 16 from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. and Wednesday, May 18 from 7 p.m. until 10:30 p.m.

The two other locations for the newly reported cases includes the Villa Oasis High School graduation at 3740 North Toltec Road in Toltec on Tuesday, May 17 from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. The other location for the newly reported case is the Cottonwood Medical Center at 560 North Camino Mercado, Unit 7 in Casa Grande from 1 p.m. until 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 18. 

There is a community wide health alert for Pinal County as one of the new cases went to multiple locations in and around Casa Grande from May 15 through May 22. 

Officials say the Eloy Detention Center has taken steps to prevent further spread of measles cases within the facility. 

"Measles is a highly contagious yet vaccine-preventable disease," said Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services in the press release. "It is spread through the air and through coughing, sneezing, and contact with mucus or saliva from the nose, mouth, or throat of an infected person."

Officials say you may be protected from measles if you were vaccinated for measles or previously had the disease. 

Measles begins with a fever, runny nose, a cough and red, watery eyes. Symptoms also include a rash that is raised, red and blotchy.

"Symptoms can appear up to 21 days after exposure," said Dr. Rebecca Sunenshine, medical director and disease control administrator for Maricopa County Department of Public Health in the press release. "Based on what we know now for the above exposures, if you have not developed measles symptoms by June 13, 2016, you have not been infected. A person with measles is considered to be contagious as soon as symptoms start and can last four days after the rash appears."

Officials say the measles cases originated in the private Eloy Detention Center. Seven more measles tests are taking place at the Arizona State Laboratory. 

If you believe that you have measles you are advised to contact your health provider by phone. If you do not have a health provider you are advised to go to your local emergency room or urgent care.