UPDATE 1-Disneyland seeks to reassure public amid measles outbreak
(Updates with out-of-state cases linked to Disney; new statement from health department)
By Dan Whitcomb
LOS ANGELES Jan 22 (Reuters) - Disneyland sought on Thursday to reassure visitors that the theme park was safe amid a measles outbreak that began there in December and prompted state health officials to urge parents not to bring their unvaccinated children.
The California Department of Public Health reported 59 confirmed measles cases among state residents since the end of December, most linked to an initial exposure at Disneyland or the adjacent Disney California Adventure Park.
Nine more cases linked to the two Disney parks were reported out of state - one in Mexico, three in Utah, two in Washington state and one each in Oregon, Colorado and Arizona.
The outbreak is believed to have begun when an infected person visited the Anaheim resort, likely from out of the country, from Dec. 15 to Dec. 20.
Among those infected are at least five Walt Disney Co employees and a student at Huntington Beach High School, some 15 miles (24 km) from the park, which earlier this week ordered its unvaccinated students to stay home until Jan. 29.
On Wednesday Dr. Gil Chavez, deputy director of the state health department, told reporters that anyone immunized for measles should have no concern about visiting the theme parks.
"But if you are unvaccinated, I would worry about it," Chavez said. "And if you have a minor that cannot be vaccinated - under the age of 12 months, I would recommend that those children are not taken to places like Disneyland today." Continuación...