Measles, mumps and rubella vaccines sit in a cooler at the Rockland County Health Department in Pomona, New York. The MMR vaccine is a two-dose vaccine that typically ensures immunity to measles. (Seth Wenig, Associated Press)

B.C.’s measles vaccination program gains traction

More than 15,000 doses of the MMR vaccine has been administered across the province

B.C.’s “catch-up” immunization program has picked up traction since being launched in April, as health officials look to minimize the risk of the highly infectious measles disease.

More than 15,796 doses of measles vaccinations have been administered to children and youth since B.C. launched pop-up clinics in schools and cities, the health ministry said in report released Tuesday.

READ MORE: Should B.C. parents receive money if they make sure their kids are vaccinated?

Nearly 12,000 doses of the MMR vaccine were administered in May alone.

“We are making real progress, but a sustained effort is required to achieve the immunity levels we need to protect our children,” Health Minister Adrian Dix wrote in the report.

“We are working with our immunization experts on the vaccine status reporting regulation that will start in September 2019. More details will be announced in the near future.”

Dix announced the measles immunization catch-up program on April 1, after 29 people caught the highly contagious virus since January, stemming from multiple breakouts. Cases have been confirmed in the Lower Mainland, Greater Victoria and the Cariboo.

Most recently, a traveller infected with measles had a layover at Vancouver International Airport, sparking an alert by the BC Centre for Disease Control.

READ MORE: Alert issued after person with measles has layover in Vancouver airport

Measles easily spreads through the air by coughing, sneezing and carried on breath. Symptoms include fever, cough, runny nose and red eyes, followed a few days later by a rash that starts on the face and spreads to the chest.

The province’s target is 95 per cent immunization.

Dix urged any parents or guardians with questions about their child’s immunity to contact their regional health authority or family doctor.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Early a.m. train through Maple Ridge cancelled, until further notice

West Coast Express service will run four instead of five trains into Vancouver

Van fire in Maple Ridge business park

Vehicle engulfed in flames

Council hears update on Maple Ridge snow

Focus is to clear priority routes

Rally organizer seeking B.C. Liberal nod in Maple Ridge-Mission

Jamie Seip wants to run next provincial election

VIDEO: Soldiers trade rifles for snow shovels to help dig out St. John’s

A state of emergency is set to extend into a fifth day

Convicted Fraser Valley con man facing 39 charges in Vancouver area

Donald Quinnell got four years prison in 2015, again facing fraud, theft, stolen credit card charges

Police seize nearly 50 kilos of drugs in Surrey

Police say this has taken perhaps millions of deadly doses of fentanyl and other drugs off the streets

Young child seriously injured in suspected drunk driving crash in Delta

“This needs to stop,” says Insp. Ciaran Feenan, head of the Delta Police Department’s patrol section

Elderly man in serious condition after being hit by bus in Burnaby

RCMP believe man, 82, was not at a crosswalk at the time

ICBC to bring in ranking system for collision, glass repair shops

Change comes after the much-maligned auto insurer has faced criticism for sky-high premiums

70% of ICBC calls in the last two weeks came from Lower Mainland

This was in a 17-day stretch from Jan. 3 to Jan. 19, inclusive

Most Read