Measles outbreak alarms minister

Terry Lake says he hasn't considered making vaccinations mandatory, health officials warn parents about travel during spring break

  • Mar. 10, 2014 5:00 p.m.

Health Minister Terry Lake

Health Minister Terry Lake said his ministry is watching closely as Fraser Health deals with a potential outbreak of measles, which appears linked to a lack of routine vaccinations in school-aged children.

Lake said he has not yet considered making vaccinations mandatory for school-aged children, as other provinces have, despite some schools in the Fraser Valley reporting no vaccinations at all.

“At this time we’re not going down that road, but we certainly want the public to be very aware of the importance of vaccination, and get the rates back up where they should be,” Lake said.

Fraser Health has confirmed two cases and about 100 suspected cases in the Eastern Fraser Valley. Officials wouldn’t identify the school Monday, except to say it is in a Chilliwack community with a history of low immunization rates.

Officials asked anyone who believes they are exposed to measles to contact their doctor before arriving at a medical facility.

“We are urging individuals who may have been exposed to the virus to contact their local Public Health Unit to be cleared before travelling during spring break,” said Dr. Paul Van Buynder, chief medical officer for Fraser Health.

The measles warning applies to Abbotsford, Mission, Chilliwack, Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs and Hope.

 

Just Posted

Choir leader’s selfless work wins her Castlegar Citizen of the Year

Christina Nolan has grown the community choir into a strong and vibrant asset for the city

Water main maintenance ongoing in South Castlegar and Blueberry

Project will take two weeks — city says there should not be any service disruptions

Downtown businesses want you to love them this weekend

Third annual event encourages people to shop in their own community.

Police investigating man’s death in Winlaw

Foul play not established, but major crimes unit is investigating

Grand Forks woman assaulted in home invasion

The incident took place Wednesday morning

Police say it’s “impressive” no arrests were made after Raptors celebrations

Toronto will play the Western Conference champion Golden State Warriors next

Social media giants in hot seat as politicians consider regulations in Ottawa

Committee members will also grill representatives from Facebook, Twitter

Wildfire crews watching for dangerous wind shift in High Level, Alta.

The Chuckegg Creek fire is raging out of control about three kilometres southwest of the town

UN urges Canada to take more vulnerable Mexican migrants from Central America

The request comes as the United States takes a harder line on its Mexican border

Mistrial declared in Jamie Bacon murder plot trial

Bacon was on trial for counselling to commit the murder of Person X

B.C. VIEWS: Money-laundering melodrama made for TV

Public inquiry staged to point fingers before 2021 election

Canadian homebuyers escaping high housing costs by moving to secondary cities

In British Columbia, exurbs have grown in the Hope Valley and Kamloops

Feds lay out proposed new rules for voice, video recorders in locomotives

Transport Canada wants to limit use of recorders to if a crew’s actions led to a crash

Most Read