March 24, 2019

Officials say person with measles flew from Vancouver to Edmonton to NWT

27 February 2019, 03:23 | Silvia Roy

Public warned after airline passenger with measles flies through Vancouver and Edmonton airports.

Person with confirmed case of measles flew in, out of Alberta

A measles outbreak is underway in Vancouver, after an unvaccinated child contracted the disease during a trip to Vietnam last month.

Community pharmacists in B.C. have joined a chorus of health officials urging residents to get vaccinated after a recent outbreak of measles in Vancouver, just as two more cases were confirmed Friday. The individual was travelling from Vancouver to Inuvik, N.W.T.

One person lives in the Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) region and the other was traveling through Richmond and YVR (Vancouver International Airport) en route to Edmonton, then the Northwest Territories.

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Officials in the Northwest Territories also issued a statement, warning that a person flew to Inuvik from an "international destination" on February 13, and that the person's travels also took them through Yellowknife and Norman Wells, N.W.T., the same day.

Medical health officer Dr. Reka Gustafson said local clinics have seen an increase in patients requesting vaccines, but there are no concerns about running out of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine so far.

Now, it is believed that a case of measles that was originally in Vancouver has spread to another Canadian city through the Vancouver International Airport. The disease was acquired internationally and was also spread to several classmates and two of his siblings. "Individuals are encouraged to monitor for symptoms for 21 days after the date of potential exposure, which could be up to March 5", reads a release from the health agency. "If we felt the health and safety of the general public was at risk we would have issued our own alert".

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Albertans can call Health Link if they are unsure of their vaccination history.

A complete list of locations confirmed to have the vaccine is available on the Vancouver Coastal Health website.

Immunization information is collected for children entering kindergarten, for new students registering at a school, and in Grades 6 and 9 when routine school-based vaccination programs are done. Anyone who suspects they may be infected with measles should contact a healthcare provider immediately.

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Symptoms of measles may include a fever of 38.3 C or higher; a cough, runny nose or red eyes; and a red blotchy rash that appears between three and seven days after the fever starts, originating behind the ears and on the face then spreading down the body. This virus is highly infectious and you do not have to be in close contact with someone who is infected to contract it.

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