A confirmed case of measles has prompted health alerts for a handful of locations in Leduc and at the Edmonton International Airport.

An individual with lab-confirmed measles stopped in Edmonton while en route from Vancouver to Inuvik on Feb. 12, stated a news release issued Sunday by Alberta Health Service.

In the course of 20 hours, the person — who was infectious at the time — posed a risk to passengers on two flights, the users of two shuttles, shoppers at a Walmart, and travellers staying at a hotel in Leduc.

“Individuals who were in the above-noted locations at the time frames indicated and who were born after 1970 and have NOT already had measles disease or have NOT received two doses of measles vaccine, may be at risk for developing measles,” states the release.

The specific times and locations are:

Tuesday, Feb. 12

  • Flight from Vancouver to Edmonton on AC236, which arrived in Edmonton at 12:54 p.m.
  • The Edmonton airport hotel which departed from the terminal at about 2:30 p.m., stopping at four Leduc hotels: Paradise Inn and Suites, Crystal Star Inn, Wyndham Garden Edmonton Airpot and Wingate by Wyndham.
  • The Walmart Supercentre on Discovery Way in Leduc, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.
  • The Stars Inn Hotel, on Sparrow Crescent in Leduc, after 3 p.m.

Wednesday, Feb. 13

  • The 6:30 a.m. shuttle from the Crystal Star Inn to the Edmonton airport
  • Canadian North flight from Edmonton to Inuvik on 5T-444. That flight travelled through Yellowknife and Norman Wells.

Similar warnings have already been issued in Vancouver and Inuvik.

Measles is a highly infectious disease that spreads through the air, through coughs or sneezes, or by touching a surface contaminated by the virus. It can remain airborne for two hours or it can be spread through contact with an infected person, like sharing food, drinks, toys and cigarettes.

Symptoms can appear around seven to 21 days after being exposed to the virus. They include:

  • Fever.
  • Dry cough.
  • Runny nose.
  • Sore throat.
  • Inflamed eyes (conjunctivitis).
  • Tiny white spots with bluish-white centres inside the mouth (Koplik’s spots).
  • Skin rash of large, flat blotches that often flow into one another.

The MMR vaccine is the best way to protect against measles, and all children 12 months and over and adults born in or after 1970 should receive it, says the department. Children between 12 months and 12 years can get the MMRV vaccine instead.

Measles can lead to serious complications in some children, including pneumonia, encephalitis or death.

In B.C.’s Lower Mainland, there are now 10 cases of measles. One of the cases involved a teen who was infected during a family trip to Vietnam. Another case involved a man who had travelled to the Philippines.

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