Health officials are sounding the alarm now that there is a revival in measles cases. Just six weeks into 2019, there have been seven confirmed cases of measles in Texas. Five of those cases are in Houston-area counties alone and a possible sixth case may be in La Porte ISD.
“This is a renewed increase in measles activities in our community,” said Abiya Malhotra, Director of Northwest Assistance Ministries’ (NAM) Pediatric Health Center. “And measles is a serious disease, not to be taken lightly,” she continued.
Measles is an airborne virus that can be particularly dangerous. It can cause serious neurological disorders and death in infants and the developing fetus in pregnant women. Its spread through direct contact with discharge through the nose and mouth, as well as coughing and sneezing.
Malhotra is urging parents to vaccinate their children if they have not already done so. “Parents can bring their kids to NAM’s Pediatric Health Center where they can receive the vaccinations they need to protect them from the disease."
She is also asking parents to carefully monitor their children for cold symptoms, red-eye, fever or strange rashes. If your child has any of these symptoms, please call the Pediatric Health Care center before bringing them in. Parents will receive special instructions from one of NAM’s medical facilitators before bringing their child into the Health Center since measles is so highly contagious.
To make an appointment, please call the Pediatric Health Center appointment line at 281-885-4630 Monday – Thursday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Friday 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. For after hours, please call the UT Nurse Hotline at 713-486-8876. NAM accepts Medicaid, CHIP, and private insurance. For those without insurance, there is a minimal flat fee.
The Pediatric Health Center is a unique partnership between NAM and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). While bringing excellent care to its patients, the center also serves as a training facility for UTHealth Science Center students as well as other local universities and community colleges.