Rubella (German Measles)

  • Infection caused by a virus

Signs and Symptoms

  • It can take from 14 – 21 days to develop Rubella after exposure.
  • The infection usually begins with a low-grade fever, swelling of the glands in the neck and behind the ears, and a rash with small red spots.


  • Usually spreads through the air when an infected person sneezes, coughs or talks.
  • Can be spread by touch (hand contact).
  • It is highly contagious for 7 days before, and up to 7 days after the rash develops.


  • There is no “cure” but can be managed with bed rest, fluids and fever reduction
  • Antibiotics do not work in treating Rubella.


  • It can create serious problems for pregnant women, especially in the first 3 months of pregnancy.


  •  There is a vaccine for Rubella, the MMR vaccine that is a part of the routine childhood immunizations

If your child has Rubella, he/she should not return to school until at least 7 days after the rash first appeared.

Rubella is a reportable disease and must be reported to the Local Medical Officer of Health under the Health Protection and Promotion Act.