Measles outbreak alarms minister

Terry Lake says he hasn't considered making vaccinations mandatory, health officials warn parents about travel during spring break

  • Mar. 10, 2014 10:00 a.m.

Health Minister Terry Lake

Health Minister Terry Lake said his ministry is watching closely as Fraser Health deals with a potential outbreak of measles, which appears linked to a lack of routine vaccinations in school-aged children.

Lake said he has not yet considered making vaccinations mandatory for school-aged children, as other provinces have, despite some schools in the Fraser Valley reporting no vaccinations at all.

“At this time we’re not going down that road, but we certainly want the public to be very aware of the importance of vaccination, and get the rates back up where they should be,” Lake said.

Fraser Health has confirmed two cases and about 100 suspected cases in the Eastern Fraser Valley. Officials wouldn’t identify the school Monday, except to say it is in a Chilliwack community with a history of low immunization rates.

Officials asked anyone who believes they are exposed to measles to contact their doctor before arriving at a medical facility.

“We are urging individuals who may have been exposed to the virus to contact their local Public Health Unit to be cleared before travelling during spring break,” said Dr. Paul Van Buynder, chief medical officer for Fraser Health.

The measles warning applies to Abbotsford, Mission, Chilliwack, Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs and Hope.


Just Posted

Chilliwack’s Spirit Abreast team searching for new paddlers

As dragon boat season approaches, breast-cancer-focused team holds annual meet and greet

B.C. Lion legend Angus Reid brings o-line expertise to Chilliwack

The longtime Canadian Football League center will run a camp in Chilliwack March 31.

Speculation tax causing concern at Cultus Lake, Harrison Hot Springs

Recreational property owners face hefty bill for 2019 for what some call a ‘wealth’ tax

Spartan grad shines at NCAA Div-II swimming nationals

Jessie Gibson earned All-American status in four events and smashed Simon Fraser team records.

VIDEO: All-midget wrestling shows in Cloverdale, Chilliwack this weekend

Company boss Short Sleeve Sampson: ‘It’s midget wrestling, and it’s always been midget wrestling’

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

Pro-Trump protest sign with F-word is OK, court rules

Judges say Ontario man can protest publicly, even using vulgar language

Body of missing Australian woman found in Whistler lake

RCMP say they do not suspect foul play in Allison Raspa’s death

VIDEO: Police officer looking for distracted drivers gets hit by truck

Road safety investigator clipped by trailer while patrolling busy intersection

YVR wants you to help name three new puppies

Say hello to the Vancouver Airport’s new assistance pups

COLUMN: Fundraiser helps Abbotsford family fulfill $100K goal for BC Children’s Hospital

Five years after setting their goal, Team Miracle Maya surpasses their target

Suspect who attacked autistic man in Ontario could be from B.C.’s south coast: police

29-year-old man was sent to hospital with serious injuries

Privacy watchdog to explore Facebook leak

Canadian expert says his analytics company helped Trump campaign capitalize on private Facebook info

Woman struck and killed by self-driving Uber vehicle

Ride-hailing company suspends all road-testing of such vehicles in U.S. and Canada

Most Read