Health officials in Gothenburg are trying to track down and contain a measles outbreak in the city.
The Sahlgrenska University Hospital has confirmed eight cases of measles since December 10th. On Thursday the children’s emergency ward closed temporarily after a ninth suspected case of the infection.
The hospital is trying to track down those who may have been infected. Many are believed to have been exposed to the virus, but only a limited number of infections are expected as most Swedes are vaccinated against measles.
Health officials urged those who are not vaccinated to get the measles jab, but told people who believe they may have been infected to stay at home and contact health advice hotline 1177.
“These people should not be in the waiting rooms due to the risk of infection. If you still go to our emergency wards you should pay attention to the information signs and additional healthcare staff at the entrance. Their job is to ask about measles symptoms and vaccination status. If they suspect infection the patient will be treated in a separate room,” said Anne Haglund Olmarker, duty hospital chief.
“Because we are tracking down the infection, we may find people who are not vaccinated. They are then offered the opportunity to quickly get vaccinated. Vaccination must take place within three days of infection,” she added.
The first symptoms are high fever, a severe cough and red eyes, followed by a rash.
Sweden has offered vaccination against measles since 1971 and as part of the MMR jab (measles, mumps and rubella) since 1982. More than 97 percent of two-year-olds are today vaccinated.