2nd UC Berkeley student infected with measles 'could have exposed thousands'

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Health officials at the University of California, Berkeley say another student has been diagnosed with measles, and they are concerned others may have been exposed to the virus.

RELATED: 13 more measles cases in California; at least two more intentionally unvaccinated 

KTVU-TV reports officials confirmed that the student could have exposed thousands of others when riding public transit home from Oakland International Airport on March 30, and attending classes from April 1-3.

This is the second time that the university has dealt with a case of measles: in February, another infected college student was identified. Officials said Friday the current infected student is in isolation. Berkeley's Tang Health Center was offering vaccines Saturday and encouraging members of the campus community to assess their risk level.

RELATED: 4 more measles cases in California; 4 who got it abroad were intentionally unvaccinated

This is also one of three new cases reported in California this week, bringing this year's total to 52. There were just four statewide as of this time last year. 

Additionally, Orange County reported an additional case, saying it now has 22 cases. The state public health department told KPCC that it had not yet received information about the 22nd Orange County case, and thus didn't include it in its total.  

RELATED: Are vaccine waivers causing the increase in California's measles cases?

Since the measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. in 2000, there have been between 4 and 40 cases of the respiratory disease in California each year, most of them involving people who traveled to countries where measles is still present.

State and county data indicate that 11 people have contracted the measles while abroad, and another seven contracted it directly or indirectly through someone who had traveled. At least four of the travelers were intentionally not vaccinated; the CDPH is still investigating the circumstances surrounding one of the travelers.  

KPCC has confirmed that at least 16 of this year's measles cases involved people who were intentionally unvaccinated. 

The surge in measles cases has worried state health officials. California allows parents to opt out of vaccinating their children by invoking a personal belief exemption, but the large number of this year’s victims who opted out of a vaccine is leading officials to urge parents against opting out.

With additional reporting by Adrian Florido.

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