You might already be aware that measles have been making an unwelcome comeback over the last year. With the rise of so-called "anti-vaxxers," the once rare illness is now becoming more common, especially amongst young children.
TL;DR A woman infected with measles visited two clinics across Montreal between January 28-30, 2019. The clinics cannot be named, but those not vaccinated are at risk of exposure. The woman also spent time in both Toronto and Montreal airports during the contagious period, meaning thousands more could be exposed. More details below.
But it's one thing to hear about the issue and another to be personally affected by it. Unfortunately for Montrealers, if you happened to have visited a health clinic during the last week of January, you might want to go see your doctor ASAP is you are experiencing troubling symptoms.
Why? Well, you may have been exposed to measles.
The city's Public Health Agency is warning of the possible exposure between January 28 and January 30, 2019. A woman who had travelled to Montreal from Europe visited two clinics across the city on these days, she was later confirmed to have measles that she likely contracted while in Poland.
Since she visited these clinics, which cannot be named due to policy, during the contagious period of the illness, it is possible that anyone not vaccinated against measles could be infected. Children are most at risk, as it is the leading vaccine-preventable death in the world for youth.
Although the clinics aren't being named, the advisory applies to the Centre-Sud-de-I'île-de-Montreal area. This includes clincis and hospitals in Ville-Marie, Southwest, Verdun, and the Plateau-Mont-Royal.
The issue is that the two Montreal clinics aren't the only places this woman went while she was contagious with measles. She took connecting flights to Montreal from Toronto, meaning it is possible that hundreds, if not thousands, of people have been exposed to the illness already.
The Montreal public health agency is advising people with symptoms such as fever, cough, runny nose, conjunctivitis, and red spots all over the body to call in before heading over to a clinic. Complications such as brain damage and even death are a risk to pregnant women and infants, as well as anyone with a compromised immune system.
Those not vaccinated with measles may begin showing signs of symptoms over the next coming weeks. Stay tuned for any information on outbreaks.