This digitally colorized, thin-section transmission electron microscopic (TEM) image revealed the ultrastructural appearance of a single measles virus particle, or virion. Courtesy of CDC/Cynthia S. Goldsmith; William Bellini, PhD
A survey of healthcare providers by Alroy, et al. (2019) reveals several different strategies to minimize measles virus exposures in outpatient healthcare facilities. According to the researchers, New York City has experienced the largest measles outbreak in the United States since 1992. The NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) surveyed outpatient healthcare facilities that reported one or more suspected measles cases during Sept. 30 to Dec. 10, 2018 to understand infection control procedures in outpatient facilities and to share best practices. The essential common element in the implemented strategies was early awareness that a patient might have measles, optimally before they enter the health care facility. This highlights the importance of performing measles screening and rapidly identifying patients with suspected measles.
As the researchers observe, "Strengthening healthcare facility infection control is crucial to preventing infectious disease transmission. Guidelines to prevent or minimize airborne pathogen spread in outpatient healthcare facilities exist; however, few reports describe practical implementation when engineering controls, such as recommended airborne infection isolation rooms (negative pressure rooms), are unavailable."
They add, "The essential common element in the implemented strategies is early awareness that a patient might have measles, optimally before that patient enters the healthcare facility. This underscores the importance of maintaining a high index of suspicion during an outbreak, performing measles screening, and rapidly identifying patients with suspected measles."
Reference: Alroy KA, et al. Reference: Interventions to Reduce Measles Virus Exposures in Outpatient Health Care Facilities — New York City, 2018. MMWR. Vol. 68. 2019.