In the wake of nearly a dozen measles cases being reported elsewhere in Ontario, local health officials want you to take precautions. Your local Health Unit is urging you to check that your vaccinations against measles are up-to-date. People born in 1970 or later are advised to ensure they have been vaccinated against measles. Individuals born prior to 1970 were likely exposed to measles and are usually considered immune. However, people travelling outside North America, health care workers and military groups may require measles vaccination regardless of age. The Health Unit’s warning comes as a total of 11 measles cases have been detected recently in southern Ontario.
Measles is a serious, highly infectious disease. People can spread measles to others before they develop symptoms of the disease. Measles can cause high fever, cough, rash, runny nose and watery eyes. It can also lead to ear infections and pneumonia, and in rarer cases, encephalitis (an infection of the brain) and even death. Very young children and people with weakened immune systems are most vulnerable to measles.