Seven measles cases in five weeks at Queensland uni

A SEVENTH measles case within five weeks has been confirmed at the University of Queensland, with health authorities warning more cases may be likely.

Metro North Public Health Unit (PHU) Physician Dr James Smith said the seventh case involves a student from University of Queensland's St Lucia campus who was a passenger on Singapore Airlines flight SQ235, which arrived in Brisbane at 7am on Saturday, 15 August.

"Measles symptoms usually start around 10 days after contact, but can occur between seven and 18 days after contact with an infectious person," Dr Smith said.

"This means we expect to see further measles cases from contact with these individuals."

The PHU is advising students who are unwell to avoid the university campus, part-time work and social events, including shopping centres, bars and parties.

"Measles is infectious for about four days before the rash develops," Dr Smith said.

"None of the seven cases realised they were highly infectious when on campus and in the community."

Dr Smith said early symptoms of measles are similar to the flu and other respiratory illnesses, and include a fever, cough, runny nose and dry, itchy eyes.

Anyone who develops measles-like symptoms within the next week or two should stay home and contact their GP for advice.

"If you do need to seek treatment, it is important to call the medical practice first to say you could have measles, so that staff can take precautions to avoid spreading the disease to others," Dr Smith said.

Further advice is available by calling 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84).



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