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October 22, 2019

Allentown woman, possibly exposed to measles, ordered to remain quarantined by judge

Judge intervened when Lehigh County resident, possibly exposed to measles, resident couldn't prove she was vaccinated

An Allentown woman who may have been exposed to measles has been ordered by a judge to stay home and in isolation after initially refusing to be quarantined. 

Common Pleas Judge Edward Reibman has ruled that Tamika Brown must remain quarantined in her home until Nov. 3 or until it is determined that she previously had been vaccinated for measles. Brown is one of five Allentown residents quarantined due to a possible measles exposure, the Morning Call reports. None of the five people quarantined have exhibited symptoms of the contagious illness. 

Brown visited a Lehigh Valley Health Network facility on Oct. 12 — the same day a measles infection was discovered, the order states. She was contacted about the exposure, and it was requested she come to a facility for a MMR vaccine shot. Brown did not receive that vaccine and failed to provide immunization records to the Allentown Health Bureau.

After she refused to take part in the quarantine a hearing was scheduled for Monday.

Along with his quarantine order, Reibman directed the local health department to provide Brown with food, water, medical care and other necessities. She is the first person in nearly two decades to receive a court-ordered quarantine in Allentown. 

There have been 16 confirmed measles cases in Pennsylvania this year. Nationwide, there have been more than 1,250 cases of measles confirmed in 31 states this year, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. That is the most cases reported in the U.S. since 1992.

The CDC says the majority of the people who were infected with measles were unvaccinated. 

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