EOHU on Alert with Current Measles Case in Ottawa
Following a confirmed case of measles in Ottawa, the Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) has been in contact with Ottawa Public Health (OPH) and will be communicating with any residents that have been identified as potentially having been exposed. Locally there have been no cases of measles reported, but the EOHU is monitoring the situation.
The EOHU is reminding the public to ensure that they and their children are up-to-date with their measles vaccinations. Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, Medical Officer of Health at the EOHU, urges residents to keep their vaccinations up-to-date not just to protect themselves, but to protect others who can’t be vaccinated – including infants. “Measles is extremely contagious and can be very serious for people who aren’t vaccinated,” he says. “It can be especially dangerous for infants who are too young to be vaccinated, and for adults who have compromised immune systems.” The vaccine is a safe and effective way to prevent getting or spreading measles.
Measles vaccine is administered routinely to children at 12 months of age with a booster between 4 and 6 years old. Infants between 6 and 12 months of age can be vaccinated if they are travelling to outbreak areas or if they have been exposed to a case of measles. However, there is no change to the current recommendation for infant immunization as there has not been a declared outbreak in our area or Ottawa.
The measles vaccine is available free of charge at your healthcare provider’s office. It is also available by appointment at the EOHU, by calling 613-933-1375 or 1 800 267-7120. For more information about measles and the measles vaccine, visit www.ontario.ca/measles.