3rd infant with measles increases risk of exposure, says AHS
Alberta Health Services is warning about a significant increase in risk after another Edmonton infant too young to be immunized has been confirmed to have the measles.
“We are unfortunately expecting there will be more cases,” confirmed Dr. Marcia Johnson, the Edmonton Zone Medical Officer of Health, on Friday.
“The case is related to international travel, however, there were a number of exposures within the Edmonton zone.”
The infant arrived in Edmonton on an Air Canada Flight the evening of April 24. Over the next five days, the baby was taken to at least two medical clinics, a lab, an imaging centre and a Walmart.
The child, who is under 12 months of age, is the third infant and seventh person in Edmonton to have contracted the disease in this latest outbreak.
Health officials are warning the public of possible exposures in the following times and locations:
- Passengers and crew on Lufthansa Flight LH763 - departing New Delhi April 24 at 12:30 p.m. arriving in Munich at 5 a.m.
- Passengers and crew on Lufthansa Flight LH6790, departing Munich at 11:50 a.m. April 24, arriving in Toronto at 2:40 p.m.
- Passengers and crew on Air Canada AC157 departing Toronto at 6:30 p.m. on April 24 and arriving in Edmonton at 8:44 p.m.
- Members of the public and staff who were in the Edmonton International Airport on April 24, between 8:44 p.m. and 11:15 p.m
- Members of the public and staff who were in All-Well Medical Clinic, 4217 23 Ave, Edmonton, on April 27 between 10:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
- Members of the public and staff who were in Wal-Mart at 1203 Parsons Rd, Edmonton, on April 27 between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.
- Members of the public and staff who were in the Medical Clinic at 209-9252 34 Ave, (Dr. Bhambhani’s office) Edmonton, on April 28 between 10:45 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
- Members of the public and staff who were in Dynalife Lab on April 28 at the Tawa Centre, 3015 66 St, Edmonton, between 2:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
- Members of the public and staff who were at the medical clinic at 209-9252 34 Ave (Dr. Bhambhani’s office) on April 29 between 9:45 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
- Members of the public and staff who were at Medical Imaging Consultants at Tawa Centre on April 28 beween 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
Given the increased risk of exposure, AHS officials are reminding Edmontonians to keep an eye out for symptoms of the virus, which include fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes and a red blotchy rash that begins behind the ears and on the face before spreading to the rest of the body.
“We’re asking people that were exposed – if they develop the symptoms … to please stay home and phone Health Link for instructions,” said Johnson, adding that AHS is closely monitoring the situation.
“For each case, we kind of hold our breath and watch very carefully for the next three weeks.”
Parents of infants aged six to twelve months are advised to book an immunization appointment.
Unlike Calgary, which is opening up several clinics specifically to administer the measles vaccine, no additional clinics are planned for Edmonton.
However, Johnson said parents in Edmonton should not be worried about access after Health Link added 50 additional staff and extended clinic hours to deal with demand.
“Calgary has organized the immunization program a little differently than we have in Edmonton," she said. "We’re effectively meeting the demand here in Edmonton, and I believe Calgary is effectively meeting the demand there.”