Out­break doesn’t stop shop­pers

Moms, dads not de­terred by measles

SundayXtra - - TOP NEWS - By James Turner

AMEASLES out­break in Man­i­toba isn’t stop­ping folks from go­ing about their daily lives. And par­ents with young kids showed no hes­i­ta­tion at all to shop Satur­day at St. Vi­tal-area stores provin­cial of­fi­cials have iden­ti­fied as sites where the virus could have been trans­mit­ted ear­lier this month.

“Some people get sick. I’m sure they took the ap­pro­pri­ate steps to clean and san­i­tize ev­ery­thing,” said Don Win­sor af­ter he and his young sons, Ethan, 6, and Dy­lan, 3, ex­ited Hair Do Zoo at 845 Dakota St.

Man­i­toba Health says the chil­dren-themed sa­lon was one of a hand­ful of “po­ten­tial trans­mis­sion set­ting(s)” for measles in Win­nipeg on April 11, 12 and 14 dur­ing day­time and some evening hours.

It’s be­lieved a worker was one of seven Man­i­to­bans who had con­tracted the

‘I don’t think it’s some­thing we need to panic about, but it does shed light on the im­por­tance of vac­ci­na­tions.’

ill­ness.

Of­fi­cials re­leased the pos­si­ble trans­mis­sion lo­ca­tions Fri­day in an ef­fort to alert the gen­eral pub­lic, es­pe­cially the 15 to 20 per cent of Man­i­to­bans who are not vac­ci­nated. The lo­ca­tions are now con­sid­ered safe. “There’s ab­so­lutely no wor­ries about go­ing back there,” said mother Julie Dubois.

She was aware the sa­lon had been listed as a po­ten­tial trans­mis­sion site prior to go­ing there with her son, Xavier, 2.

Both Dubois and Win­sor separately said their chil­dren had been vac­ci­nated for measles. “I think that’s the re­spon­si­ble thing to do.”

Dubois praised health of­fi­cials for keep­ing the pub­lic in­formed. She said events have re­in­forced in her mind the im­por­tance of keep­ing vac­ci­na­tions up to date.

A UPS store and Shop­pers Drug Mart lo­cated at the same shop­ping plaza as Hair Do Zoo were also prospec­tive trans­mis­sion sites iden­ti­fied by the prov­ince, as was a April 12 bull-rid­ing event at the MTS Cen­tre.

A few blocks south of the kids’ sa­lon, shop­pers jammed into a Sobeys store listed as a site of trans­mis­sion on April 13 from noon to 5 p.m.

Michelle La­gadi, an in­ten­sive-care nurse and mother to a nine-year- old son, Ethan, ad­mit­ted that made her “a lit­tle bit ner­vous.”

Not ner­vous to the point she was avoid­ing the store, how­ever.

“I don’t think it’s some­thing we need to panic about,” she said. “But it does shed light on the im­por­tance of vac­ci­na­tions.”

La­gadi shares some con­cerns about vac­ci­na­tions, but agreed their ben­e­fits ap­pear to out­weigh any costs. “That’s how we erad­i­cated cer­tain dis­eases,” La­gadi said.

Measles is largely trans­mit­ted through saliva, sweat and cough­ing, Man­i­toba Health med­i­cal of­fi­cer Dr. Tim Hil­der­man said Fri­day. It tends to be more se­vere — pos­si­bly lifethreat­en­ing — for in­fants and young chil­dren.

The health min­istry is ad­vis­ing people who vis­ited any of the lo­ca­tions and think they may have con­tracted measles to phone their health care provider or Health Links at 204-788-8200 or 1- 888-315-9257 for additional in­for­ma­tion.

Ini­tial symp­toms of measles — in­clud­ing fever, runny nose and red eyes — gen­er­ally ap­pear a week to 21 days af­ter ex­po­sure, Man­i­toba Health says. Sev­eral days af­ter these ini­tial symp­toms, the virus’s sig­na­ture “red blotchy rash” ap­pears on the face and pro­gresses down the body, of­fi­cials say.

RUTH BON­NEVILLE / WIN­NIPEG FREE PRESS

Michelle La­gadi, with her son, Ethan, said she won’t avoid ‘po­ten­tial trans­mis­sion set­ting(s)’ such as the Sobeys on Dakota Street.

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