As per reports, she was suffering from a number of health conditions and was hospitalized in the spring at a facility in Clallam County; the northern area of the Olympic Peninsula also comes under it.
In Washington state in 2013-2014, 546 of 1,634 schools with kindergartens had vaccination levels for kindergartners under 90%, US TODAY found. She did not die knowing she had contracted measles.
Measles cases are uncommon.
Several states, including California, have moved to tighten their vaccination laws as federal health officials press more states to act.
“We know that Washington state is a state with one of the highest percentages of religious and philosophical exemptions for vaccines in the country”, he said.
“In today’s world, where measles is still a fairly rare occurrence, [doctors] would be thinking of the usual suspects, not necessarily measles”, Adalja told Live Science.
The Department of Health says this is a reminder to the public to get the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR).
During the last major measles epidemic, from 1989 to 1991, measles infected 55,000 people and killed 166. It’s the first USA death in a dozen years. But the streak has ended.
The measles infection was discovered during an autopsy. “It was before that person developed a rash that was indicative of measles”, said Stehr-Green.
She said this case shows why anyone who can be vaccinated should be, to create a herd immunity, and protect the most vulnerable.
Measles is one of the most contagious viruses and spreads easily when infected people breathe, cough or sneeze. In 1963, the first measles vaccine was introduced. She died of pneumonia this spring, and it was during her autopsy that doctors determined that her pneumonia was due to measles. The last measles case was reported in Washington in late April this year.
Donn Moyer, spokesman for the state Department of Health, said there is no known current danger of infection since the period of exposure (three weeks) is over with no new cases linked to this woman. Since month’s have passed since the last active measles case, officials do not believe people are at risk of exposure from the previous outbreak.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) counted 178 people in 24 states and the District of Columbia with measles from January 1 through June 26 this year.