Staff at Saint John-area daycares on high alert after second case of measles confirmed
Child care centres are on alert after a second confirmed case of measles in the Saint John area.
The caution follows a warning from the province that two fairly large groups of people may have been exposed.
At a north end Saint John daycare, CEO Erin Schryer is on alert.
“We're closely monitoring the situation,” she said. “We do understand the potential severity of the situation … I’m in contact with public health daily.”
The caution is because a second case of measles has been confirmed in the greater Saint John area.
The highly contagious disease can be more severe in infants and lead to complications.
According to New Brunswick's routine immunization schedule, babies receive the vaccine at 12 months and then again at 18 months.
“We do have children in our care who are younger than that, or within that 12 to 18 month age, so there’s some fear among parents about that,” Schryer said.
The YMCA of Greater Saint John serves between 500 to 600 children a day and keeps vaccination records on file.
“If a parent chooses not to vaccinate their child then we have to allow that exception and it's noted and we know which children are and which children are not,” said Shilo Boucher.
The second measles case was confirmed at Kennebecasis Valley High School this week and is connected to the first.
Dr. Jennifer Russell, New Brunswick’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, says that people who have received a double dose of the MMR vaccine are protected, but that some born between 1970 and 1995 might not have gotten that second dose.
“(We’re) encouraging our families and our staff to go and make sure they've been vaccinated and if they haven't been to do that,” Schryer said.
Said Boucher: “We are following all the precautions that public health would be advocating for. We're looking at holding a vaccination clinic so we can help our parents if their child needs any additional vaccinations.”
The province has also promised a vaccination clinic at the high school.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Lyall.