Taiwan cautions travelers against measles in PHL, Vietnam
Taiwanese travelers were advised over the weekend to take precautions against measles when visiting the Philippines and Vietnam.
A report on Taiwan News Online said Taiwan's Center for Disease Control issued the warning after at least two Taiwanese were believed to have contracted the disease in the Philippines.
"Measles is a highly contagious disease but it can effectively (be) contained through vaccination. Anyone traveling to the Philippines or Vietnam to visit relatives or for business or travel should pay close attention to personal hygiene and not bring along children under one year of age who have not had a complete series of shots for measles, mumps and rubella (MMR)," said the report posted Sunday.
Citing data from Taiwan's CDC, the report said two nine-month-old twin girls living in southern Taiwan showed symptoms of measles after they "traveled with their parents to visit the Philippines in December to visit relatives."
"After they returned to Taiwan [on] January 19, they both developed fever, a rash and other symptoms and [were] hospitalized for treatment. They were both discharged February 15," the report said.
The report also said Taiwanese health authorities have identified 961 people with whom the two girls came in contact.
It will monitor them for symptoms of measles until March 3, to prevent the further spread of the disease.
Taiwan's CDC pointed out the Philippines is considered a measles-infected area, particularly the Manila, Calabarzon, and southern Mindanao areas.
The Taiwan CDC said in the report that measles cases had been reported recently among travelers from Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, the US, Canada, the UK, Singapore, Japan and other countries who have visited the Philippines.
Most of them had not been effectively vaccinated against the disease, it said.
Meanwhile, Taiwan News Online said Vietnam is another measles-infected area, with more than 620 cases reported as of February 5.
The CDC advised anyone experiencing fever, a runny nose, eye discomfort, a rash and other symptoms after returning from an infected area to get medical attention soonest.
It said the attending physician or nurse should be given a complete travel history. — JDS, GMA News