A student at the University of Minnesota has been diagnosed with a case of measles.
The 20-year-old student had just returned to the university after having traveled internationally. After three days of classes he sought medical attention from the University of Minnesota’s Fairview Hospital. There, he was diagnosed with measles.
According to MPR News, the dean of the Minnesota Medical School, Brooks Jackson, indicated that the student was off campus to recover from the disease.
University of Minnesota students, faculty and staff who have not been vaccinated against measles are being reminded that the disease is highly infectious. Jackson has urged anyone who thinks they may have been exposed to the disease to seek medical attention.
The university is working with the Minnesota Department of Health, hoping to contact anyone the infected student was in contact with.
Measles can be a very serious disease for unvaccinated people. The symptoms usually appear a little over a week after someone is exposed to the disease. First among the symptoms is usually a fever, followed by rash and then possible cold-like symptoms.
Minnesota state officials have been clear that they do not believe the university measles case is linked to the California outbreak.
Due to the Disneyland outbreak and the case from the university, a legislator in Minnesota has introduced a bill that would push parents to consult with a doctor before deciding not to vaccinate their children.
Representative Mike Freiberg stated, “Some states like Washington, which have had high exemption rates historically, have followed this approach and it’s helped reduce the spread of vaccine preventable diseases.”
The measles was very nearly eliminated in the U.S. in 2000; however, there has been a record of 644 infections reported last year. According to Freiberg, that’s not the only disease making a come-back. Minnesota has seen a rise in kids being diagnosed with mumps and whooping cough because of parents forgoing immunizations.
“Children are getting sick and being hospitalized because some parents do not understand the overwhelming evidence that vaccinations prevent serious illness,” Freiberg said.
Part of the issue that is the fear some parents have that too many vaccines too soon in life could lead to autism.
The fear stems from a 1998 study that suggested the possibility. That study did not successfully prove the theory. Since then, a 2004 study and a 2012 study have both concluded that vaccines early in life do not have any relationship to developing autism.
[Image courtesy of Liberty Voice.]