No measles reported in region

It was reassuring to learn from medical officer Dr. Trevor Corneil there have been no cases of measles reported in the region.

With the measles outbreak in some parts of the province and Canada, it was reassuring to learn from medical officer Dr. Trevor Corneil there have been no cases reported in the region covered by Interior Health.

“We do not at this point have any measles cases,” Corneil said Tuesday.

In fact, Corneil confirmed in most of the communities within Interior Health, there is 90 per cent immunization coverage.

It’s an amount he said is “certainly sufficient” to prevent the spread of measles should a case arise.

He encouraged people to have their children immunized if they haven’t been or if they are adults, to have their immunization series completed so they are protected.

For many of us, the measles vaccine was the norm, but decades ago measles was one of the most common childhood infections in North America.

In the early 1960s, over half a million children were infected every year. In 1963, the creation of a measles vaccine changed everything.

The Fraser Health Authority reported Monday it is continuing to work with identified cases of measles and their contacts to contain the spread of the disease.

“We are seeing 80 to 100 cases of measles covering Fraser East,” the health authority noted.

“A case linked to the original outbreak was at the BCIT campus on March 6 and 7 and Fraser Health is working with BCIT to alert students who may have come in contact with this particular individual who has measles.”

The risk to the general BCIT student population is low, as most of the population are in the age group that would have received two doses of measles-containing vaccine, the health authority assured, adding there has been no significant spread of measles outside of the Fraser Valley East communities.

Up until recently, very few new cases of measles have occurred each year in developed countries, while they have occurred in epidemic proportions in developing areas.

It will be interesting to see if in 2014 that medical data is altered.

Unless, of course, 80 to 100 cases is considered “very few.”

– Williams Lake Tribune