Ohio measles outbreak grows to 143 confirmed cases

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio (AP) — The number of confirmed cases in measles outbreak in Ohio has more than doubled over the past 10 days.

The Ohio Department of Health reports 143 confirmed cases of the highly contagious respiratory illness in six counties.

About two-thirds of those cases are in Knox County. Neighboring Ashland and Holmes counties each have 19 cases. Residents of Coshocton, Richland and Wayne counties also have been infected.

Health officials say the outbreak began among Amish who had traveled to the Philippines, which has had a measles epidemic.

Measles is caused by a virus. Symptoms include fevers, coughs, rashes and pink eye.

Officials are urging vaccination to limit the spread of measles and of mumps, which has caused a separate outbreak in central Ohio.

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