The statewide outbreak of measles has worsened in the past month, enough so that Riverside County has issued a Measles Health Advisory.

As of March 14, 32 measles cases have been reported in California. Of these, five cases have been reported in Riverside County since February 2014.

In 2013, at this time, only three cases had been reported throughout the state and no cases were reported in the county.

Cases have been reported in neighboring counties of Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego.

Health professionals recommend that unvaccinated residents traveling to countries where measles is circulating should receive the mumps/measles/rubella vaccine before they go.

Any individual with a fever and rash should consider measles as a possibility. Symptoms begin with a fever that lasts for a couple of days, followed by a cough, runny nose, red, watery eyes and a rash. The rash typically appears first on the face, along the hairline, and behind the ears and then affects the rest of the body. Infected people are usually contagious for about eight days, four days before their rash starts and four days after.

Infants, pregnant women and immuno-compromised persons are more susceptible to complications from measles.