A teenager from New Zealand visited Los Angeles and Orange counties this month and made a trip to Disneyland while she was sick with measles, potentially infecting others, health officials warned Friday.
Orange County officials say visitors may have been exposed to measles while at Disneyland or California Adventure on Aug. 12, or at the Desert Palms Hotel in Anaheim between Aug. 11 and 15. L.A. County officials also listed several tourist destinations the girl visited while in town.
Considered one of the most contagious diseases in the world, measles spreads through coughing and sneezing but can linger in the air for up to two hours after an infected person leaves the room.
“Measles is a highly contagious and potentially severe disease that causes fever, rash, cough and red, watery eyes,” Orange County health officer Dr. Nichole Quick said in a statement. “It spreads very easily by air and by direct contact with an infected person.”
Quick advised anyone who was at the Orange County locations to monitor for fever or rash. Signs of infection will appear within 21 days of exposure.
The news comes as the country grapples with its worst measles outbreak in decades. As of Aug. 15, 1,203 people have been diagnosed with measles this year, compared with 372 in all of 2018.
Disneyland is not the first crowded place measles has popped up this year. Officials also have warned of exposure to the disease at the midnight premiere of “Avengers: Endgame,” the Grove shopping center and on the UCLA campus.
There have been 65 recorded cases of measles in California this year. Officials urge anyone who has not been vaccinated to get immunized; most people who have contracted measles in the state were not immunized.
Los Angeles health officials provided an additional list of locations where people may have been exposed to measles: