Don’t Have The Measles Vaccine? Stay Away From Disneyland (For Now)

Now that a measles outbreak linked to Disneyland and California Adventure Park has grown to 70 cases, California public health officials are warning people who haven’t yet been vaccinated against the measles to stay away from Disney’s theme parks.

The outbreak traced back to December has spread to five states and Mexico, reports the Associated Press, with 70 confirmed cases so far (62 in California alone) and the numbers are expected to rise.

Measles is highly contagious, making those without the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine susceptible to catching it. Those people should avoid going to Disney “for the time being,” according to state epidemiologist Dr. Gil Chavez. That includes children who are too young to be immunized.

A spokeswoman for Disneyland Resorts agreed, adding that “it’s absolutely safe to visit if you’re vaccinated.”

In the meantime, park employees who may have come into contact with infected people had to show proof of vaccination or a blood test to show immunity before coming to work. Those with pending results are on paid leave, and all employees have been offered vaccinations.

The full statement from Dr. Chavez below:

“Measles is highly contagious and highly preventable through vaccinations. CDPH is urging caution to individuals who are not vaccinated, especially infants under 12 months. Any place where large numbers of people congregate and there are a number of international visitors, like airports, shopping malls and tourist attractions, you may be more likely to find measles, which should be considered if you are not vaccinated. It is absolutely safe to visit these places, including the Disneyland Resort, if you are vaccinated. Therefore, CDPH recommends that anyone not already immunized against measles gets immunized at this time. Two doses of measles-containing vaccine (MMR vaccine) are more than 99 percent effective in preventing measles. If you are unsure of your vaccination status, check with you doctor to have a test to check for measles immunity or to receive vaccination.”

People not vaccinated for measles urged to avoid Disneyland [Associated Press]