Measles alert: Travellers may have been exposed at YVR this week
Passengers may have been exposed to the highly contagious measles virus this week at Vancouver International Airport, according to an urgent public health alert issued Friday afternoon.
Health officials said they have confirmed yet another case of the measles in Metro Vancouver, this time in a traveller who recently returned home from a trip to the Philippines.
The patient, who is a Burnaby resident, arrived at YVR on Philippines Airlines Flight PR116 on the afternoon of Tuesday, July 23. Fraser Health said anyone who was on that plane, or in the airport's arrivals area between 4:30 and 7 p.m. that day, could have been exposed to the virus.
The same goes for people who were at YVR's park-and-ride shuttle from 5 to 7 p.m.
"For people exposed, they should monitor for any symptoms of measles that develop up to three weeks after being exposed," Fraser Health said in its public health alert. "Symptoms of measles include fever, dry cough, runny nose, and red eyes; followed a few days later by a rash that starts at the hairline and spreads rapidly down to the rest of the body."
Anyone who believes they have been infected with measles is urged to call a health care provider before going in for a visit, so appropriate precautions can be made to prevent further spread of the disease.
People who were born in 1970 or later who have not had two doses of the measles vaccine are particularly at risk, officials said, and should get a booster dose as soon as possible, preferably within three days of their possible exposure.
Fraser Health said the vaccines, which are provided free of charge, will be provided to passengers from Flight PR116 and anyone who was at either of the two affected YVR locations at the City Centre Urgent Primary Care Centre on Hornby Street in downtown Vancouver, and at the New Westminster Public Health Unit on 6th Street in New Westminster.