PALATINE, Ill. -- Cook County health officials say more cases of the measles are likely to surface, after babies from a day care center in suburban Palatine were diagnosed with the disease.
“There will be more cases. … We shouldn’t be surprised about that,” said Dr. Terry Mason, chief operating officer of the Cook County Department of Public Health. “The cat is out of the bag.”
The outbreak happened at the KinderCare Learning Center, located at 929 E. Palatine Road in Palatine.
The two children who tested positive for measles are under the age of 1. Three other children who are being tested are also under the age of 1. Their test results are due back Friday. All the children were too young to be vaccinated.
“We will do everything we can to identify if there is a point source of this,” said Dr. Terry Mason with the Cook County Health Department.
The babies are being quarantined at home for 21 days, and the center is not accepting any unvaccinated children during that time.
KinderCare says its facility was given a deep cleaning Wednesday night and they’re now working with staff and parents to obtain immunization records.
There are 1,500 KinderCare facilities across the country and starting Monday, all facilities will be requiring staff members who work with infants to be vaccinated for measles.
Health officials say both of the babies with confirmed measles cases and an adult diagnosed with measles last month all went to Northwest Community Hospital.
“At this time there is no identified link between these measles cases and the adult case reported in suburban Cook County two weeks ago or the multi-state outbreak of measles associated with Disneyland,” Mason said.
Measles is a highly infectious respiratory disease that can cause severe health complications, including pneumonia, and in rare cases, death. It starts with a rash, and is transmitted through coughing or sneezing. It can remain alive in the air and on surfaces for up to two hours.