An Accurate Thermometer is First Line of Defense in Preventing a Measles Epidemic

| July 10, 2019

Thermometers are Must-Pack Items for Summer Travel

Before they zip up the duffle bag or shut the suitcase, parents across the country have one more thing to pack before they head off for vacation this summer: an accurate thermometer. Reported measles epidemic cases have exceeded 1,000 in the first six months of 2019 — the highest number in more than a quarter century, according to the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The total number of measles cases in the U.S. has grown to 1,095, which is the highest since 1992, where there were 2,200 cases nationwide, and cases have been reported in 28 states.

Concerns center around both local and international travel. Those who travel internationally can contract the disease abroad, bring it back and then spread it to unvaccinated people in their community. Health officials urge caution with children attending summer camps and families in high attendance attraction areas like amusement parks, national parks and recreation centers. Even increased socializing at neighborhood or community events can heighten exposure and risk of an outbreak.

According to Mayo Clinic, the first sign of measles can be a high, sudden fever. The disease also typically starts with a cough, runny nose, red eyes and a sore throat, followed by a reddish-brown rash. Measles can cause serious complications, such as pneumonia or encephalitis, and even death. Some people are at greater risk for complications, including infants, young children, people with compromised immune systems, and pregnant women.

“The key to successfully preventing any kind of medical outbreak like this is through awareness, education and timely medical action, particularly in the case of vulnerable infants and young children,” said Francesco Pompei, Ph.D., CEO of Exergen.

Corporation, manufacturers of the Exergen TemporalScanner. “Measles, like other contagious diseases, usually start with a sudden, high fever, so it’s critical to have a thermometer you can trust on hand, both at home and with you if you are traveling. If your child seems sick and has a fever, keep them away from others and call your doctor immediately.”

For more information on enjoying a safe summer vacation, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Plan for Travel and Measles Outbreak Page.