On Thursday, Costa Rica's Ministry of Health confirmed positive measles cases in two out of four American children who became ill earlier this month.
The Ministry tested four children between the ages of 3 and 10 in Cóbano, Puntarenas, who exhibited measles symptoms after being treated at a social insurance clinic in the region. The parents, who are American citizens and have five other children, have never had their children vaccinated for measles.
Costa Rica's Child Welfare Service, Patronato Nacional de la Infancia (PANI), intervened earlier Thursday and placed family 11 under strict quarantine where they live in Cabuya de Cóbano to prevent them spreading the virus.
"The children were treated at the Cóbano Clinic (Social Security) Clinic, having had fever since March 1
UNVACCINATED FRENCH BOY, 5, INSULATED IN COSTA RICA WITH SUSPECTED MASCASE MASSA
Costa Rica puts national surveillance protocols in place to determine whether additional measures need to be taken to prevent the spread of the virus. The children are suspected to have contrasted the virus from an American woman visiting the family who left Costa Rica on March 12.
"There won't be an epidemic of measles in our country," Daniel Salas Peraza, the health minister told Tico Times. "But of course we don't want any child to suffer from measles or face the complications that measles can cause."
The health secretariat examines who the infected children may have come into contact with, but the children have not attended school in the country.
PANI's Managing Director Patricia Vega explained that it is within the childcare service to force children to be vaccinated if they determine the children's rights to health and education are compromised.  "We have already spoken on our power to force children to be vaccinated. In this case, we ordered that a local office initiate a special protection process, which means that PANI will visit the family to assess whether there are any violations of children's rights, in this case health and education, "Vega Q told Costa Rica.
The Health Secretariat said it did not suspect a link between this case and the unvaccinated French 5-year-old who re-introduced measles to the country in February, the first known case of measles in Costa Rica since 2014.
Measles infection in the two US The children are the first autochthonous case in Costa Rica since 2006, which means that these children are the first to contrast the virus in Costa Rica For over a decade, Q Costa Rica reported.
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Fairs is a highly contagious viral infection that spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The infection begins with fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes before rashes of small red spots break out, according to the American Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Data from the CDC said about 500,000 cases of measles were reported annually in the US before the measles vaccination program was launched in 1963. Of the reported cases, 400 to 500 people died and 48,000 others died in hospitals per year. Measle's fall decreased by 99 percent since the extensive acceptance of the vaccine.
The CDC suggests that children be administered two doses of MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 to 15 months of age and the second dose at 4 to 6 years.