Health Officials Name Possible Exposure Sites As Measles Spread In Johnson, Miami, Linn Counties | KCUR

Health Officials Name Possible Exposure Sites As Measles Spread In Johnson, Miami, Linn Counties

Mar 28, 2018

High-resolution image of a 3D illustration of a measles virus particle studded with glycoprotein tubercles.
Credit Alissa Eckert / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Update as of March 28: Three additional cases of measles have been reported in Johnson County, Kansas, in the last week, according to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. 

The KDHE has also added the following to the list of locations where people may have been exposed to the virus:

  • Chick-fil-A, 12087 S Blackbob Rd., Olathe, Kansas; March 24th from 8:15 p.m. to close.
  • Olathe YMCA, 21400 W. 153rd St., Olathe, Kansas; March 22nd and 23rd from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Walgreens, 7500 Wornall Rd., Kansas City, Missouri; March 22 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Chuck E. Cheese's, 15225 W. 134 Pl., Olathe, Kansas; March 21st, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Eight measles cases have now been identified in Johnson County, with another two in Linn and Miami counties, according to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Health departments in the three counties have pinpointed where and when the individuals were infected. Because people can acquire measles anywhere from a week to three weeks after exposure, KDHE said there are concerns that additional cases may be identified.

The agency is urging people who are ill or exhibiting symptoms to remain at home unless they’re seeking medical care.

KDHE says people who visited the following locations on the dates and times listed may have been exposed to measles:

Auburn Pharmacy, 625 E Main. St., Mound City; March 13 from 4:15 p.m. to 6:45 p.m.

Aldi’s, 15290 W. 119th St., Olathe; March 2 from 3 to 5 p.m.

Payless Discount Foods, 2101 E. Santa Fe St., Olathe; March 6 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

El Potro Mexican Café, 602 N Pearl St., Paola; March 7 from 4 to 8 p.m.

Children’s Mercy Hospital Kansas Emergency Department, 5808 W 110th St., Overland Park; March 8 and March 10 in the morning

AMC Dine-In Studio 28, 12075 S. Strang Line Rd., Olathe; March 9 from 3:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Budget Coin Laundry, 798 E Main St., Gardner; March 9 from 8 to 11 p.m.

Olathe YMCA swimming pool and locker room, 21400 W. 153rd St., Olathe; March 10 from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Bath and Body Works at Legends Outlets, 1803 Village W. Pkwy., Kansas City, Kansas; March 10 from 1 to 3 p.m.

Crazy 8 at Legends Outlets, 1843 Village W. Pkwy., Kansas City, Kansas; March 10 from 1 to 3 p.m.

Orange Leaf, 11524 W 135th St., Overland Park; March 10 from 3 to 6 p.m.

Nancy Tausz, health services division director at the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment, says the 11 locations were identified through contact tracing, the process of identifying individuals who have spent time in a room or enclosed space where an infectious individual was present or for up to two hours later. The outbreak started in a Johnson County child-care facility. 

"The investigation is still ongoing," she says, and additional cases may turn up.

"They're very fluid when you do investigations, so it still remains to be seen," she says. 

Except for 2014, when three cases were reported, the county had zero cases between 2012 and now. The eight cases in Johnson County already equal the total in 2011.

Initial symptoms of measles include high fever, coughing, runny nose and red, watery eyes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Tiny white spots typically appears inside the mouth two or three days later, followed by a rash that spreads downward on the body. The disease is highly contagious and spreads through coughing and sneezing.

The measles virus can live for up to two hours in the airspace where an infected person has coughed or sneezed, the CDC says.

Measles is preventable with the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine. The CDC recommends that children get two doses, the first at 12 through 15 months of age and the second at 4 through 6 years of age. Two doses are 97 percent effective, according to the CDC; one dose is 93 percent effective.

Dan Margolies is a senior reporter and editor for KCUR. You can reach him on Twitter @DanMargolies.