Alaska confirms first measles case in more than decade

The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services says the state’s first measles case in more than a decade has been confirmed in Fairbanks.

The department said Tuesday an adult who recently traveled to central Asia tested positive for the measles virus. The individual developed a rash several days after arriving in Fairbanks on May 31.

Alaska Section of Epidemiology Chief Dr. Joe McLaughlin says Fairbanks residents should make sure they are up-to-date with their measles vaccinations.

The patient might have been infectious while in several locations in Fairbanks from May 31 through June 7.

The patient was on a flight to Fairbanks that originated in Seattle and did not transit in Anchorage. Federal officials are contacting people who may have been exposed on airlines outside of Alaska.