As the Public Health Department in Montreal is struggling to maintain the first chickenpox epidemic over the years, the Quebec College of Physicians warns of the dangers of vaccine hesitation in the general population.
On Thursday, authorities declared a minor outbreak in the city after reporting two new measles, raising a total of seven this year. What worries public health officials is the fact that the two new infections are secondary, which means that individuals have contracted a very contagious disease in the city rather than abroad.
The last time Quebec reported the occurrence of measles in 2015 in the Lanaudiere region, when 163 people became ill.
This time, the authorities in Montreal are particularly careful, given the growing number of cases of measles in the United States and the world. The state of New York was particularly hard hit, with more than 700 cases.
In Montreal, the public health department found the source of the last occurrence of an unvaccinated individual returning with measles from a visit to Paris on April 26. That person was carrying the virus of an unvaccinated female member of the family, and the girl then spread measles for a healthcare worker who was previously vaccinated.
The infected health worker then visited six public locations from May 11 to May 14. Up to 400 people may have been exposed to an infectious health worker, including children in day care in Mount Royal.
On Friday, nurses visited that day care, Garderie Aventuriers d & # 39; Outremont at Bates Rd.
"The nurses were here to administer vaccines for children at risk," says Angela Barbato, a co-owner of child care, who has 70 children up to 5 years of age.
"I can confirm that vaccines are administered, but I can not explain the number. It's confidential information."
Barbato added that "we are definitely preoccupied and parents are preoccupied, but with the guidance of Canada's health we could inform parents about what should come."
Meanwhile, the Public Health Department has opened five vaccine centers to provide free footage until June 14 to anyone who has not been vaccinated. The following groups are considered protected: each born before 1970; those born from 1970 to 1979, who received only one shot; and those born after 1980, who received two shots. (Two shots give protection of 95% of measles.)
Authorities encourage anyone suspecting whether they have been vaccinated to call 811, the info-santa line. By Friday afternoon, less than a dozen people were referred to the Info-Sante vaccination, said Justin Meloche, spokesperson for the public health department.
In addition to administering vaccines, nurses also gave immunoglobulins to non-vaccinated individuals who were exposed to an infected person. Immunoglobulins are antibodies to temporarily increase the immune response to reduce the likelihood of measles capture.
On Wednesday, Dr. Yves Robert, Secretary of the College of Physicians in Quebec, issued an open letter on the professional order website, asking Quebecers not to be misled about the effectiveness of the vaccines.
"In recent weeks there have been measles measles in North America and, at the same time, a return to the periodic debate about immunization," Robert writes, adding that "the decline of doubt sometimes has more effect than ocean proof."
"We no longer remember the risks of what we wanted to stop and we only talk about the side effects of a preventative tool, real or hypothetical."
The World Health Organization has seen an increase of 30 percent in the global incidence of measles since 2016, attributing the jump to gaps in vaccination coverage.
In Quebec, a study found that in 2016, 94.2 per cent of two-year-olds received two doses of the measles vaccine, which is 87.6 per cent in 2006. But the same report refers to parental feedback that reflects vacillation vaccine, with some parents gathering information from unreliable social media platforms.
And according to recent statistics by the provincial government, coverage of the measles vaccine was 78 percent in primary schools in 2018, well below the target of 95 percent coverage.
The molars can cause fever, coughing, sneezing, and a widespread sore throat. Infection can lead to serious complications, such as pneumonia and encephalitis, and may be fatal.