Not enough nurses in region
A shortage of nurses in the Capital Health Region means a local vaccination program for the mumps is weeks away, despite outbreaks of the disease in southern Alberta and eastern Canada.
The provincial government initiated a free vaccination program in the Lethbridge area last week when "a cluster of cases" surfaced at the University of Lethbridge and Lethbridge Community College, but Edmonton doesn’t have the resources to offer mump vaccine clinics right now, says Gerry Preddy, Medical Officer of Health for the Capital Region.
"The problem is that this directive from Alberta Health and Wellness came in the middle of our influenza campaign," Preddy told Metro yesterday. "We are working to find the resources."
There have been 796 recent cases of mumps across Canada, a number that has caused the National Advisory Committee on Immunization to recommend a second dose of mumps vaccine be offered to post-secondary students.
"People in the age group of 17 to 26, who are being offered the vaccine, may have missed their second MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) immunization as children and, therefore, may be more susceptible," said Preddy.
"We’ll have more information out in a couple weeks about how people can get immunized."