Measles in Michigan: 3 total cases reported by health officials

Given the highly contagious nature of measles, medical and public health officials are raising concerns after three total cases were recently reported in southeast Michigan. 

"Measles is the most infectious virus known to humankind," said Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, the director and health officer of Wayne County’s Department of Health, Human & Veterans Services.

On Sunday, March 3, health officials confirmed one case in Wayne County and another case in Washtenaw County; both were adults who traveled internationally

Michigan's first case of measles since 2019 was reported by the Department of Health & Human Services on Feb. 23. The infectious disease was detected in a child in Oakland County who had also traveled internationally.

The MMR vaccine – which protects against measles, mumps, and rubella – has been available since the 1970s. Physicians are urging individuals who were not vaccinated against measles during their childhood to get the shot now to help stop the potential resurgence of the disease.

"We've now had three separate introductions of measles within a very short period of time," said Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, the MDHHS chief medical executive.

According to the CDC, at least 41 cases of measles have been reported in the U.S. this year across nearly 20 states – many of the cases are in Florida.

"Which is what makes me concerned about us coming up on Spring Break season," said Dr Russell Faust, the medical director of the Oakland County Health Division. "A lot of families will be, maybe, traveling down to Florida – so it’s important that they are vaccinated." 

"With one single measles vaccine, the efficacy is about 93%. And with two vaccines, it's between 97 and 98%," Bagdasarian said. "Measles is extremely preventable."

Four of the possible exposure locations from the cases reported on Sunday are in Wayne County, while one is in Washtenaw County.

Possible measles exposure locations:

  • WCPH WellStreet/Beaumont Urgent Care (23100 Michigan Ave, Dearborn) on Feb. 27 between 4-5:30 p.m.
  • CVS Pharmacy (2701 S. Telegraph Rd, Dearborn) on Feb. 27 between 4-6:30 p.m.
  • Henry Ford GoHealth Urgent Care (26763 Ford Rd, Dearborn Heights) on Feb. 29 between 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Corewell Emergency Health Department (18101 Oakwood Blvd, Dearborn) on Feb. 29 between 3-8 p.m.
  • Trinity Health Ann Arbor Emergency Department waiting and triage areas (5301 McAuley Dr, Ypsilanti) between March 1 from 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

If you believe you were exposed to measles in Wayne County, contact the health department at Those who believe they were exposed in Washtenaw County can contact the health department at 734-544-6700.

Measles symptoms:

  • High fever (may spike to over 104˚F)
  • Cough
  • Runny nose
  • Red, watery eyes (conjunctivitis)
  • Tiny white spots on the inner cheeks, gums and the roof of the mouth(Koplik Spot) two to three days after symptoms begin

"About one in four people that are sick with it will be hospitalized," said Susan Ringler Cerniglia with the Washtenaw County Health Department. "It can also cause encephalitis, pneumonia and some other very serious complications."

So if you experience any of the measles symptoms, do NOT just show up to an ER or doctor’s office.

"Call ahead and let them know that you’ve been exposed to measles," Bagdasarian said. "Because if you don’t let them know you could risk exposing other people in waiting rooms."