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Second measles case confirmed onboard NorthLink ferry

Passengers have been urged to be vigilant after two cases of measles have been confirmed on Serco NorthLink Ferry services.

A second measles case has been confirmed, linked to a Serco NorthLink Ferries service between Shetland, Kirkwall and Aberdeen.

NHS Shetland has this week issued a “warn and inform” message to all passengers who travelled on three dates, including a northbound sailing which called in at Kirkwall.

Those who disembarked and embarked the ferry in Orkney on Saturday, October 19, have been warned that they may have come into contact with the highly-infectious virus, say NHS Shetland.

As well as the Saturday, October 19 sailing, warnings have been issued for all passengers who travelled on the southbound and northbound sailings on Sunday and Monday, October 20 and 21, which did not call in past Orkney.

All crew members who travelled on the three dates have been notified.

NHS Shetland is working with other relevant authorities including Health Protection Scotland to ensure that all control measure are in place to prevent further spread of the disease.

The only way to prevent the spread of measles is to have the MMR vaccination, of which two doses is required to ensure full protection. It is possible that subsequent cases of measles could arise in susceptible passengers who have not been vaccinated.

Measles is most common among young children who have not been fully immunised, and the disease can be spread through direct contact or through the air when they cough or sneeze.

Passengers who travelled on the ferry are asked to be vigilant and content their GP or Public Health teams if they develop a:

  • Fever of 38 degrees celsius or higher.
  • And a generalised rash.
  • And either a cough, snotty nose and/or conjunctivitis.

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