Otago Polytechnic

< Back to Student Hub 

Measles alert for Dunedin and Southland

MMR Vaccine shortage

Vaccine stock is limited nationally and supplies at this time have been prioritised to Auckland.

Student Health will be vaccinating the students that are already booked for their MMR vaccination, but no further bookings will be taken until vaccines are available and onsite – the date for this is unknown at this stage. 

We advise students and staff that are not vaccinated to avoid travelling to areas known to have measles.

What you need to know

  • Southern DHB has issued an alert to the public of their potential exposure to measles following confirmation of the disease in a person travelling through Otago and Southland while in the infectious period. 
  • The person visited the following venues: 
City/town Venue Date Time

Wanaka

New World

8 Sept

Midday

Queenstown

Halo Cafe

Bulls and Bangles

Madame Woo

9 Sept

9 Sept

9 Sept

Morning

Morning

Evening

Dunedin

The Noodle Box

Arana Residential College

Starfish Cafe

New World City Centre 

Hybrid Mines Concert - Union Hall, Otago Uni

Dunedin Social Club

Night and Day (Octagon)

Arana Residential College

Hell Pizza (North Dunedin)

11 Sept

11 Sept

12 Sept

12 Sept

12 Sept

12 Sept

13 Sept

13 Sept

13 Sept

Evening

Evening

Morning

Midday

Evening

Late evening

Early morning 

Early morning

Early afternoon

Winton

Winton Pharmacy

New World

13 Sept

13 Sept

Evening

Evening 

  • The total number of confirmed cases now stands at 23, with 22 being residents of Central Otago. 
  • To date there have been no confirmed measles cases from Dunedin or Southland. 
  • Southern DHB are asking everyone to be alert for the symptoms and signs of the highly infectious illness. 
  • Measles symptoms include:
    • high fever
    • runny nose
    • cough
    • sore red eye.
    • a few days later a rash starts on the face and neck before spreading to the rest of the body.
  • If you suspect that you have measles symptoms, please stay at home (to avoid the illness spreading) and phone either:
    • Student Health (03 479 6082) or the Polytech (0800 762 786) and ask to be transferred to Student Health
    • Your family GP
    • Healthline (0800 611 116) which is available for advice 24/7.
  • Immunisation against measles with two doses of MMR vaccine is the best protection and is free for all eligible people (pregnant women, immunocompromised people, and people who have not had two measles vaccines, such as MMR should be especially vigilant).
  • From 1 Jan 2019, there are 991 confirmed cases in New Zealand with 821 confirmed in the Auckland Region. If you are travelling to Auckland, make sure you are vaccinated against measles at least two weeks before you go. 

Vaccination information 

  • Currently there are limited vaccines available at general practices.
  • The MMR vaccination priority is to ensure all children across NZ receive their vaccines on time at 15 months and 4 years to maintain the national childhood immunisation schedule. 
  • The priority groups for vaccination are being reviewed regularly based first on priority children then on who it is most important to target in local cases.
  • There is a focus on tracing people who may have been in contact with a known case, and isolating them if they are un-immunised or under-immunised.
  • It is important that those who have been asked to stay in isolation, do so for the recommended length of time to prevent possible spread. This is the best and most helpful action for the community at this stage.
  • The Immunisation Advisory Centre has provided up to date information about measles immunity and the MMR vaccine on their website: https://www.immune.org.nz/hot-topic/measles-overseas-and-new-zealand 

Am I vaccinated?

  • People are not at risk if they have had two vaccinations for measles, or were born before 1969 or have had measles.
  • People who may have been exposed to measles and are not fully immunised are being asked to stay in isolation until the incubation period is over.
  • On time vaccination with MMR for children at ages 15 months and 4 years is the best way to prevent measles. We encourage those aged 29 – 50 years to ensure they are fully vaccinated with two measles vaccinations. 
  • If you’re not sure if you’ve been vaccinated and need to check your immunity status, the best way to do this is:
    • look at your immunisation page of the Well Child Book – Plunket Book
    • ask your parents if you don’t have this
    • check with your practice nurse at your GP. 

Where can I get more information?

For more information on measles please visit the Ministry of Health website.