Health Highlights: Aug. 20, 2018

Related Health News

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Wildfire Smoke Causing Poor Air Quality in U.S. Pacific Northwest

Smoke from wildfires will cause poor air quality in parts of the U.S. Pacific Northwest this week, officials warn.

Air quality alerts are in effect for much of Washington state through Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service, the Associated Press reported.

In the Puget Sound region, smoke from wildfires in British Columbia, Canada and the Cascade Mountains could reach unhealthy levels by Monday, according to the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency.

Smoke from wildfires in British Columbia will cause unhealthy air levels in eastern Washington and north Idaho through Tuesday, the weather service warned.

A pollution advisory has been issued for southwest Washington, Portland and much of the Willamette Valley. Conditions were expected to worsen Sunday night and last through Wednesday, the AP reported.

An air pollution advisory for southern Oregon is in effect until further notice.

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U.S. Measles Outbreak Hits 107 Cases in 21 States, D.C.

A measles outbreak that's so far affected 21 states and the District of Columbia is being investigated by U.S. health officials.

As of July 14, there had been 107 cases reported since the start of the year, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The cases have been in Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas and Washington, USA Today reported Thursday.

Most of the people who got measles weren't vaccinated.

This outbreak is on track to exceed last year's 118 reported cases in 15 states and the District of Columbia, according to the newspaper.

Meanwhile, Alaska health officials say a 16-year-old girl visiting the state on a cruise ship last week was contagious after contracting measles during a previous trip to Thailand, and they're concerned that passengers may spread the disease, the Juneau Empire reported.

"We notify health care providers in a situation like this, even though it's a low-risk measles is so highly contagious," said Dr. Joe McLaughlin, Alaska state epidemiologist. "It spreads through the air in respiratory secretions: coughs, sneezes."

Passengers on the cruise, which ended in Seward, may not develop the measles until as late as Aug. 27, USA Today reported.

This is a story from HealthDay, a service of ScoutNews, LLC.