Thursday , October 21 2021

Edmonton child contracts vaccine preventable disease


EDMONTON (660 NEWS) – A child from Edmonton was diagnosed with a rare and possibly fatal illness.

A letter from the Edmonton School Board was sent to parents on Friday notifying them that a child attending Evansdale School was diagnosed with diphtheria, a vaccine-preventable disease.

"It causes a cluster of symptoms, especially difficulty in the heart and nervous system. Most commonly, it is a respiratory disease, "explained Dr. Chris Fikora of Alberta Health Services, explaining some of the side effects.

It is rare in Canada because there is a vaccine for it and Albertans can receive the shot as early as two months old. Alberta Health Services is contacting a small group of people who may have been in close contact with the student.

"In circumstances where there are cases identified, it is important to have good handwashing and to ensure that people are as healthy as possible," he said. "Then cleaning the high contact surfaces where people usually come in contact."

For a list of answers to frequently asked questions about Diphtheria, visit the Alberta Health Services website by clicking here.

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