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Saskatchewan reports measles case in baby whose family arrived by air this month

A student receives a measles vaccine injection.

VALENTIN FLAURAUD/REUTERS

Health officials in Saskatchewan are issuing a public advisory after an infant with measles travelled by air to the province in early January.

Officials say the baby's family flew from Manila to Vancouver on Philippine Airlines on Jan. 2, then on WestJet flights from Vancouver to Calgary and Calgary to Regina on Jan. 7.

They say passengers who were on the same flights as the family may have been exposed to measles.

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Measles is a highly infectious disease that is easily transmitted through the air with symptoms that include high fever, cough and runny nose, followed by a rash.

Health officials say the baby was not immunized.

Denise Werker, deputy chief medical health officer, says the infant is being treated and is recovering.

"Measles cases are quite uncommon in Saskatchewan, but this situation underscores the importance of vaccinations," Werker said Friday.

"The risk of exposure to highly contagious diseases can be particularly high during busy travel seasons, for people travelling within Canada, as well as to and from countries experiencing measles outbreaks."

Saskatchewan has confirmed one other case of measles since the new year involving a person who had travelled from the Philippines. That case was not considered to be infectious during travel.

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