Spread of measles in L.A. County appears to be slowing, officials say

21 measles cases confirmed in Los Angeles County; officials say spread of disease is slowing

Los Angeles County officials say the spread of measles appears to be slowing, but they're concerned about low vaccination rates in some parts of the county. 

Interim county health officer Dr. Jeffrey Gunzenhauser said there have been 21 confirmed measles cases in Los Angeles County during the recent outbreak, of which 17 have been associated with Disneyland. Statewide, there have been 92 confirmed cases.

Of the Los Angeles County cases, 15 came in the first wave of the outbreak and six more since, Gunzenhauser said.

"There's some hope that we may get ahead of the outbreak at some point in the near future," he said.

Overall, measles vaccination rates in Los Angeles County are high, with 98% of kindergartners immunized, he said. But in some school districts, immunization rates are lower, with more than 10% of students not vaccinated.

"We have some concerns about the Westside part of the county," Gunzenhauser said.

A quarantine was placed Monday on 14 infants enrolled at a child-care center on the Santa Monica High School campus after an infant was diagnosed with measles.

County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, who represents the Westside, said she would like "the broadest possible ability for school districts to act" to encourage immunization and control the spread of the disease, including sending out information on scientific research supporting vaccination and quarantining unvaccinated students.

Infants under 12 months old, pregnant women and people with compromised immune systems are particularly at risk.

Follow Abby Sewell on Twitter at @sewella.

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