Eighth measles case confirmed in city; school affected

Wellington-Duf­ferin-Guelph Public Health is now in­vestigating eight cases of measles here. The most recent case is linked to Taylor Evans Public School.

Measles symptoms can appear up to 21 days after con­tact with an infected individual but usually appear in 10 to 12 days. The first case in Guelph was reported April 10.

“We expect the number of cases to increase,” said Janice Walters, the program manager of communicable diseases at Public Health. “Measles are high­ly contagious. You can spread the virus one day before you even have symptoms, and up to four days after the rash appears.

“That’s why unimmu­nized children and those without up-to-date immunizations are ex­cluded from school.  To control the spread of the virus we need to isolate those individuals.”

Families that choose not to immunize their children must have a legal exemption on file with Public Health.

If there is a case of measles at a school or daycare, children without up-to-date immuniza­tions or legal exemptions will be excluded for a minimum of 21 days from school or licenced child care.

“Three weeks is a long time for parents and guardians to make alternative childcare arrangements,”  said Walters.  “Make sure you have up-to-date immunizations – including two doses of the measles mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. Know the signs and symptoms of measles. Stay at home if you’re sick.”

If immunizations are not up-to-date, call a doctor or call WDG Public Health at 519-846-2715 extension 4746 to book an appointment.