Taipei, Dec. 11 (CNA) A female nurse at a hospital in northern Taiwan has contracted measles and may have come into contact with about 600 people during the contagious stage of the infection, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said Wednesday.
The nurse, in her 30s, most likely became infected with the highly contagious disease while treating a patient at the hospital on Nov. 13, the CDC said.
It is believed that the patient contacted measles during a recent visit to Thailand, according to CDC Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞).
The nurse developed a fever on Dec. 4 and sought treatment at the hospital the next day when she began having pain behind her ears, Lo said.
On Dec.7, the nurse developed a rash and was put in a negative-pressure isolation unit until it was confirmed Tuesday that she had a measles infection, Lo said.
He said it has been determined that the nurse came in contact with 607 people, including other hospital staff and patients on the job, and as she traveled to and from work, during the contagious stage of the disease.
Those people are under observation by the hospital and local health authorities through Dec. 25, Lo said, adding that a spread of measles could occur in Taiwan as a result of the case.
The 607 people have been advised to conduct self-health management at home for 18 days and to seek medical attention immediately if they develop symptoms such as a fever, cough, runny nose or red rash, he said.
According to CDC data, there have been 135 cases of measles in Taiwan this year -- 81 locally acquired and 54 imported, mainly from Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines.