The Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) has confirmed a case of measles in Yorkton, Saskatchewan in a returning traveler who had recently flown into the Regina airport on June 9, 2019 after overseas travel. As a result, the SHA is issuing an exposure alert for individuals who travelled on specific flights, and through specific airports, as follows:
If you have been on any of these flights or in the airport or in the Yorkton Regional Health Centre during the times above, and are pregnant, immunosuppressed or under the age of one, you may qualify for preventative treatment.
Measles is a highly infectious disease transmitted by airborne spread. Passengers, crew, travelers and area residents who may have come into contact with measles as above, and are unsure of their immunization against measles, are asked to contact their local Public Health Office. While it is expected that the majority of travelers will be immune to measles, some individuals may be susceptible, including infants less than one year old, immunosuppressed people, or people who have never been immunized against measles.
Individuals most at risk from measles are those who are completely unvaccinated against the disease, including babies under one year of age. Individuals born after 1970 should have received two doses of a measles vaccine (often given as combined measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, or MMR) to be protected. Those who were born prior to 1970 are likely to be immune due to prior measles infection.
Infected individuals are likely to develop symptoms within 7 to 21 days of being exposed. Symptoms of measles include the following:
If you develop any of these symptoms of measles and suspect you may have measles, call ahead to your health care provider, and inform them that you may have been exposed to measles, so that she/he will arrange to see you in a manner that avoids infecting others in the waiting room.
Depending on where you are travelling, you may be at increased risk of exposure to measles. If you are uncertain of your immunization status please contact your local Travel Health Centre or Public Health Office.
WATCH: Dr. Mark Vooght, SHA's public health lead for this issue, describe the situation, outline what to watch for and answer additional questions from media about this exposure alert. (YouTube: Runs 10 Minutes)
More information on measles and this alert can be found at saskhealthauthority.ca/news/public health alerts.