Quebec facing 10 confirmed cases of measles, top doctor says he’s ‘worried’

Click to play video: 'Quebec facing 10 confirmed cases of measles, top doctor says he’s ‘worried’'
Quebec facing 10 confirmed cases of measles, top doctor says he’s ‘worried’
RELATED: Cases of measles have been confirmed in both Ontario and Quebec. And some of the infections are not connected to travel or close contacts, indicating there is now community transmission. Heather Yourex-West looks at why and who is most at risk – Mar 4, 2024

Quebec has 10 confirmed cases of measles and most of them are in Montreal, the province’s top doctors said Monday.

Dr. Luc Boileau, Quebec’s director of public health, said the majority of cases involved children and at least one adult contracted measles. The Montreal region accounted for seven of the infections to date.

He urged people to get vaccinated if they haven’t already, saying it is the best way to guard against the highly infectious virus. Health authorities are “worried about the situation.”

“Most people who are not vaccinated and are in contact with someone who has measles will develop the disease,” Boileau said during a news conference in Montreal.

The latest health and medical news emailed to you every Sunday.

Dr. Caroline Quach-Thanh, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist at Ste-Justine Hospital, said that only three of the confirmed measles cases had a connection to travel. The other patients contracted the virus in the province.

Story continues below advertisement

The update comes as measles cases were confirmed in the province in recent weeks. Last week, officials noted a lack of connection to international travel in the third confirmed case “suggests that the measles virus could be circulating.”

The province’s warning echoes that of federal Health Minister Mark Holland, who also said Monday he is “deeply concerned” with the global measles outbreak and its potential impact on Canada.

Measles, which is highly contagious, is spread through sneezing, coughing and breathing. Some cases may be fatal, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).

Symptoms include rashes, high fever, runny nose, cough and red or watery eyes. Complications include blindness, severe respiratory infections and encephalitis, an inflammation of the brain.

Montreal public health director Dr. Mylène Drouin says that before the recent spread, the city had not reported a case since 2019.

— with files from Global’s Gloria Henriquez, Katie Dangerfield and The Canadian Press

Sponsored content