An individual who was in public in Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby, and Coquitlam on the weekend has been confirmed to have been infected with measles.
Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) and Fraser Health announced on April 16 that a new case of measles infection has been found in the Lower Mainland, marking it as the 27th confirmed case of measles in B.C. this year.
According to VCH, health officials determined that the infection was acquired from abroad and are following up with those who have been exposed to the virus.
The individual, who lives in the Fraser Health region, arrived on a flight from Japan and was in several public locations throughout Metro Vancouver while they were infectious.
VCH released the following list of locations that the individual was at that may have exposed other members of the public to the virus:
Saturday (April 13, 2019)
- Vancouver International Airport (YVR) international terminal in Richmond between 10:25 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
- Japan Airlines flight JL018 from Tokyo to Vancouver
Sunday (April 14, 2019)
- Ramada by Wyndham (631 Lougheed Highway, Coquitlam)
- Sun Star Restaurant (located in the Ramada) between 8:30 a.m. and noon
- Lougheed Town Centre (9855 Austin Ave, Burnaby) between 10:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.
The virus can be transmitted through the air (including coughing and sneezing), by kissing, or sharing food, drinks, or cigarettes.
Anyone who was exposed but is not immune can avoid becoming ill by obtaining a vaccination within three days of exposure. Immunization is free and is available from family doctors, walk-in clinics, or the Urgent Primary Care Centre, and may be also available from pharmacists.
Symptoms can include fever, cough, runny nose, and red eyes, followed a few days after by a rash on the face that spreads to the chest. Complications can include pneumonia, encephalitis (brain inflammation), seizures, deafness, brain damage, or death.
Anyone who develops symptoms is advised to contact your doctor’s office before you visit to inform them you may have measles so that they can take precautions to avoid exposure to other patients. Individuals with symptoms are also asked to report their illness to VCH Public Health at 604-675-3900.
The infectious period begins from up to four days prior and four days after a rash appears.
According to an April 12 update from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control, six cases were reported in South Vancouver Island from March 29 to April 10, one case in the Lower Mainland on April 2, and two cases near 100 Mile House on March 9 and 22.
For more information about measles and immunization, visit the HealthLinkBC website.