"Welcome to Gladstone. You have measles," Deborah Campbell commented, posting this photo on Facebook.

Measles warning for Airlie Beach and Proserpine

WHITSUNDAY residents and visitors are warned to be alert to the symptoms of measles after the highly infectious illness was confirmed in a person holidaying in the area.

Public Health Physician Dr Steven Donohue said laboratory tests today confirmed the 24- year-old female Swiss tourist has measles. It is believed she contracted the disease in India.

The woman was infectious between 11 - 17 March when she was admitted to Proserpine Hospital where she remains very unwell but in stable condition.

Dr Donohue said anyone in Airlie Beach who is not vaccinated or cannot verify their immunisation is up to date should contact their GP to be immunised.

"We know this woman moved through the community while she was infectious so there have been many opportunities to spread the illness," he said.

Extra vaccination supplies have been sent to GPs.

"Measles is one of the most infectious diseases around. Breathing the same air as someone with measles is enough to catch the disease if you are not immune.

"Measles is spread from person-to-person by tiny droplets created during coughing and sneezing and these droplets can remain suspended in the air," he said.

A measles alert has been issued for people visiting these areas: 

  • The Base Backpackers 11 - 12 March 
  • Woolworths Airlie Beach Sunday 13 March before 12pm 
  • The Doctors Airlie Beach, Tuesday 15 March 11am - 12.30pm 
  • Wednesday 16 March McDonalds in the afternoon 
  • Magnums Backpackers 15 - 16 March 
  • Proserpine Hospital, Wednesday 16 March 11.55am - 2pm 
  • The Doctors Airlie Beach, Thursday 17 March 9.40am - 12.20pm

Anyone born after 1965 who was in these areas and who has not been fully vaccinated against measles (two documented doses of MMR) should see their GP immediately.


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