Urgent measles warning to patients who visited North East A&E who may be at risk

University hospital of North Durham
-Credit: (Image: Newcastle Chronicle)


A health trust is warning patients who visited a North East Emergency Department they could be at risk of developing measles.

Anyone who visited The University of North Durham Hospital A&E between 9pm and midnight on Friday, May 24 may have come into contact with a person who had measles. County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust says people who have not been full vaccinated against measles with two doses of the MMR vaccine may be at risk of developing measles.

The trust has issued a range of guidance on what to do if you believe you have been contact with someone who has the measles.

When to speak to your GP

Some people need to ask their doctor for advice as soon as possible.

People with a weak immune system

If you have a weakened immune system, you should contact your GP and tell them that you may have been in contact with someone who has measles. Your doctor may want to do a test to find out if you are protected from measles, or give you treatment to reduce your risk of becoming unwell.

Pregnant women

If you are pregnant and think you may have missed a dose of the MMR vaccine, or are unsure if you have had the vaccine, contact your midwife or telephone the pregnancy assessment unit and tell them that you may have been in contact with someone who has measles.

Children aged under 12 months old

If your child under 12 months old attended the Emergency Department (A&E) at University Hospital of North Durham (UHND) at the same time as someone who has measles, please contact your GP for advice.

People who become unwell

You should speak to your GP or NHS 111 if you or your child get a high temperature with a cough, runny nose, sore red eyes or rash in the three weeks after attending the A&E at UHND at the same time as someone with measles. You should try to call your GP or NHS 111 before visiting them in person. This is to avoid spreading measles to others.

Tell your doctor that you or your child attended the department between 9pm and midnight on May 24 and that you may therefore have been in contact with someone who has measles. It can be difficult to know when to seek help if your child is unwell. If you are worried about your child, especially if they are aged under two years old, then you should seek medical help.

People who have not had two doses of the MMR vaccine

If you are unsure if you or your child have had two doses of the MMR vaccine, which will protect you against measles, contact your GP to arrange vaccination. If you have missed a dose you can still be vaccinated at any age. Please see further information on the MMR vaccine in the factsheet linked below:

Measles factsheet - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

When can you return to normal activities if you have measles

Someone who has measles can spread the infection in the four days before they get the rash. Once they have a rash, they can still spread the infection for another four days.

If someone is thought to have measles, they should stay away from their education or childcare setting, or work, for at least four days from when the rash first appears. They should also avoid close contact with infants under 12 months, people who are pregnant and people with weakened immune systems.

Please do not turn up to A&E or your GP practice without alerting the team before entering the building - you could potentially expose more people to measles.

If you do need urgent medical attention, please wear a mask if possible and advise the staff who will need to isolate you as they will need to wear protective clothing.