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US measles outbreak poses several questions about immunity Health lifestyle

Los Angeles: Nationwide measles outbreak led health officials to quarantine dozens of people at two Los Angeles universities.

Quarantine affects the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and California State University Los Angeles (Cal State LA) and comes when the United States is fighting the highest number of measles because the country eliminated the virus in 2000.

The United States confirmed 695 cases of measles, they said at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Many cases have occurred in New York and Washington.

California has confirmed 38 cases, state health workers said.

Quarantined people in two California campuses were exposed to measles and could not provide evidence that they had been vaccinated against the disease, the Los Angeles Health Ministry said in a statement.

"Both universities are helping to carry out quarantine orders and determine how best to support students who need to be quarantined and who live on campus," the health ministry said.

At Cal State LA, the quarantine is related to measles exposure in the library on April 11th. The quarantine initially affected about 200 employees, including some of the employee staff, the university said in a statement.

This figure was later reduced to 156 people, the Ministry of Public Health said on Thursday and quarantined in a week.

UCLA, 119 students and eight employees who were measles on campus earlier this month and could not provide proof of immunity, were quarantined Wednesday, the university said in a statement.

Since then, more than 40 people have been released from the quarantine after immunity. UCLA quarantine will end on Tuesday, according to the Department of Public Health.

The virus can lead to fatal complications, but no measles deaths have been reported in recent US epidemics.

US public health officials accuse the nationwide outbreak, coinciding with a worldwide increase in the prevalence of the disease, partly by spreading disinformation about vaccine safety.

Although the disease was excluded from the country in 2000, which means that the virus was not constantly present throughout the year, outbreaks are still happening through travelers from countries where measles are common, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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