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2011-05-14

Measles - On the Rise Worldwide

Did you know that many countries around the world, including some areas here in Canada, are experiencing outbreaks and increases in cases of measles? This informative article is from HSW:


Event Highlights
We have posted several Measles (Rubeola) - related Events over the past year involving Toronto, Qu'Appelle Health Region SK, Revelstoke BC, Ottawa, Middlesex-London, etc. The Public Health Agency of Canada recently issued a Travel Health Notice and a global Measles update (see below). Several areas around the world are experiencing outbreaks and increases in cases. Health Officials reminds travellers to make sure their measles vaccination is up-to-date. JA
TRAVEL HEALTH NOTICEMeasles remains a common disease worldwide, especially in countries where measles is endemic or where large outbreaks are occurring.
In 2010, cases were reported in many developing countries (parts of Africa and Asia) and in some countries in Eastern and Western Europe.
•A number of countries in Africa such as Angola, Botswana, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Mali, Malawi, Nepal, Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe reported large numbers of measles cases in 2010.
•In Asia, large numbers of confirmed cases were reported in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand and the Philippines. 
•European countries including Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina and France reported outbreaks of measles.
•In 2010, there were a small number of cases reported in Brazil and Argentina. Prior to these cases, there has not been a case of measles that originated in either of those countries since 2000.

In 2011, recently confirmed cases have been reported in a number of countries including the United States, Argentina and New Zealand.
•In Europe, a number of countries are reporting a large number of measles cases including: Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Romania, the Russian Federation, Serbia, Spain Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
•In Africa, a number of countries are reporting a large number of measles cases including: Ethiopia and Nigeria.
•In Southeast Asia, a number of countries are reporting a large number of measles cases including: Indonesia and the Philippines.
More information on the number of worldwide confirmed measles cases (External link) is available from the website of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Recommended Actions:
Consult a doctor, nurse or health care provider, or visit a travel health clinic at least six weeks before you travel.
1)  Get vaccinated Canadians are reminded to keep all vaccinations up-to-date.  See provincial/territorial immunization schedules for further information.  
Travellers should be up-to-date on measles immunization regardless of their travel destination. 
  • Infants and Children:
    • Two doses of a measles-containing vaccine are recommended for children.
      • The first dose should be given on or after the first birthday and the second dose should be given after 15 months of age.
      • During outbreaks or for travel to regions where measles is a concern, the vaccine may be given as early as six months of age.  Under these circumstances, the routine two dose series must be then restarted on or after the first birthday, for a total of three doses.
  • Adolescents and Adults: 
    • Adults born in or after 1970 should ensure that they have received two doses of measles-containing vaccine. 
  • You may be protected against measles if:
    • You were born before 1970; or
    • You have proof of immunity (e.g. through blood testing).
2) Monitor your health
  • If you develop symptoms similar to measles when you return to Canada, you should see a health care provider.
  • Describe your symptoms to your health care provider before your appointment. That way he/she can arrange to see you without exposing others to measles.

1 comment:

  1. Hi St. John's Mom

    Just wanted to say thanks for posting this. When we hear about outbreaks of diseases such as measles it is other countries. But an outbreak can just as easily occur in Canada. Children and adults need to keep their immunizations up-to-date.

    ReplyDelete