The British Columbia Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) in Canada has warned that some travelers may have potentially been exposed to measles.
According to the BCCDC, Air Canada passengers who flew on November 23, 2023, could be at risk, along with people who were present at Vancouver International Airport (YVR) on the same day.
“People on the same flights or who were at Vancouver International Airport (YVR) may have been exposed to measles. At YVR, the passenger spent time on the route between the arrival gate D73 at the international terminal and at the departure gate C48 in the domestic terminal, where the ill passenger waited for their next flight,” the BCCDC said in a statement on November 29, 2023.
The first flight of concern is Air Canada Flight 79 which departed from Dubai in the United Arab Emirates at 2:17 am local time and arrived in Vancouver at 6:07 am Pacific Time. Passengers flew aboard a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.
The second flight is Air Canada flight 206 which departed from Vancouver at 10:36 am Pacific Time and arrived in Calgary, Alberta at 1:06 pm Mountain Time. Passengers flew aboard an Airbus A321.
The passenger tested positive for measles in Alberta, and an alert was issued by local health officials on November 28, 2023.
The agency advised that if people were exposed during travel through VYR on November 23, 2023, symptoms could develop as early as November 30, 2023, and as late as December 14, 2023.
According to the BCCDC, measles is a highly infectious disease transmitted by airborne spread.
Most people will be immune to measles due to prior immunization and others, especially older adults, may have had measles as a child and are immune.
Individuals most at risk from measles are those who are completely unvaccinated against the disease, including babies under one year of age.
Symptoms of measles include fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes and a rash, which starts first on the face and neck, and spreads to the chest, arms and legs.
Those that suspect they have measles are advised to contact their healthcare provider.