Algoma Public Health (APH) is issuing an important public advisory to individuals who may have been in contact with a confirmed case of measles in a child in Elliot Lake.
Individuals who attended at the St. Josephs General Hospital emergency department in Elliot Lake on the following dates and times may have been exposed to measles:
- February 5, 2015 between 1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
- February 6, 2015 between 8:50 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
February 11, 2015 between 8:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
- February 13, 2015 between 8:56 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
“Anyone attending the hospital emergency department during these time periods is asked to check their immunization status and call Algoma Public Health for assessment,” says Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Acting Medical Officer of Health. “Measles is very contagious and can cause serious disease. Anyone born before 1970 is considered protected against measles but others require one or two doses of vaccine to be protected.”
Algoma Public Health staff can be reached at 705-759-5409 and will be available for extended hours. Free drop-in vaccination clinics are scheduled for the Algoma Public Health Elliot Lake office, located at 50 Roman Ave:
- Sunday, February 22, 2015 from 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
- Monday, February 23, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Other clinics may be scheduled and details will be posted on the APH website at www.algomapublichealth.com.
The child with confirmed measles also attended a local daycare. Algoma Public Health is working with the daycare to directly contact parents and staff to ensure everyone is protected against measles. Anyone not protected will not be allowed to attend the daycare.
“There is a measles outbreak in Ontario and now we have confirmed measles circulating in the Algoma district,” says Jon Bouma, APH Acting Director of Clinical Services. “All residents are reminded to check their and their children’s immunization status. Please also watch for the signs and symptoms of measles which include high fever, cold-like symptoms, sore eyes or sensitivity to light and a red rash lasting four to seven days,” he adds.
The public health unit recommends that everyone:
• Check your immunization record to make sure you and family members are up to date with the measles vaccination (MMR or MMRV). If you are unsure, please check with your health care provider. Those born before 1970 are considered protected against measles.
• If you are travelling, ensure your immunizations are up to date before you leave, including family members travelling with you. This is very important if you are planning to travel to the United States, which is currently experiencing outbreaks of measles in several states.
Learn more about measles and measles symptoms at www.algomapublichealth.com.