Thursday 22 February 2018

Students segregated in measles outbreak

Eilish O'Regan Health Correspondent

A SEPARATE exam room is being set up today for a small number of teenagers in a school hit by a measles epidemic.

The pupils in Schull Community College, Co Cork, are to be segregated from other students to avoid any risk of passing on the infectious disease.

Many of the 53 children infected with measles in the west Cork outbreak during the last seven weeks have been pupils of the school.

A spokesman for the HSE said on Monday that two more children were diagnosed over the weekend.

School principal Tim O'Connor told the Irish Independent he has received advice from the HSE and the State Exams Commission on how to cater for children who need to sit their Junior Cert or Leaving Cert who could be a risk to others.

"We have been dealing with the measles outbreak for the last four weeks or so and the main period of infection seems to have passed," he said.

"We are hopeful it is over its worst stage. It escalated quickly initially."

It emerged yesterday that just 86pc of children at two years of age in the west Cork area have been vaccinated against measles compared to 92pc nationally.

"For some years a significant number of parents in the west Cork area have declined vaccinations for their children," said a spokesperson for the Health Protection Surveillance Centre.

Irish Independent

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