A public health consultant has said the latest case of measles in north Cork should act as a "good stimulus" for those who have not been vaccinated and who have never had the disease to get the jab.

Dr Kevin Kelleher said that having the measles vaccine is now as important as having a passport when going abroad.

"There are parts of Europe where people often go on holidays where measles is still endemic and the cases we're talking about have come about as a consequence of people having visited parts of Europe and come back with measles."

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre said there is a confirmed adult case of measles in north Cork.

Dr Kelleher said the patient is doing well, but because the person was in a number of public venues in Mitchelstown, including a Primary Care Centre and a supermarket, and in Clonmel, Co Tipperary, while they were infectious, there is a possibility that others may have been exposed to the virus.

He added that this case is the latest in a group of 38 measles cases that have been diagnosed in the last couple of months.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Dr Kelleher said measles is a horrible disease and many people who had contracted it recently had ended up in hospital.

Measles is, he said, extremely contagious and it was important that anyone who felt they had been exposed to the disease and was feeling unwell to contact their doctor.

"It's a classic runny nose, conjunctivitis, cough, fever. The rash, which is the really characteristic thing, takes three or four days to come about.

"But on the whole if people do have, and this would be important for the winter as well, if people are starting to feel ill with those sort of symptoms, it's the sort of thing that people should be staying at home not exposing other people," Dr Kelleher said.