Is Your Measles Vaccination Up to Date?

Written by admin, April 1, 2014

April 1, 2014  – Public Health Reminds Residents to Ensure They’re Protected as More Measles Cases Reported in Ontario

As reports of more measles cases are confirmed in Ontario, Peterborough Public Health is reminding local residents to ensure their vaccinations are up to date to keep our community protected.

“While we have not had a confirmed measles case in Peterborough since 2008, we are working closely with local healthcare providers to monitor the situation,” said Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Officer of Health.  “The good news is we have a strong local vaccination rate of 94%, however the media attention generated by the cases in Ottawa and Toronto serves as great reminder to ensure everyone’s shots are up to date.”

To be considered appropriately vaccinated for measles, two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine at least one month apart are recommended. Without full protection, those who travel abroad may be susceptible to measles in countries where the immunization rates are low.

The Public Health sent a measles update to clinicians yesterday that noted between January and March 26, 2014, Ontario has had 10 cases of measles, five of whom were reported in returning travellers from destinations including Europe and Southeast Asia. A further five cases have acquired infection in Ontario and are epidemiologically linked to recent travel-acquired measles cases.  Local clinicians were reminded to be vigilant in watching for measles in travellers returning from abroad.

Measles is a very contagious disease and can be very serious, commonly causing diarrhea and pneumonia, and in rarer cases encephalitis and death. It spreads easily through close contact with an infected person.

Residents who are unsure about their vaccination status can check with their healthcare provider, or the health unit in the area where they grew up.

For further information, please visit the Public Health Agency of Canada website at http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/phn-asp/2013/measles-0717-eng.php .

-30-

 

For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence, Communications Supervisor
(705) 743-1000, ext. 391