09/16/2014 11:34 EDT | Updated 06/16/2017 00:53 EDT

Quebec on alert as enterovirus D-68 moves into Canada

Quebec's hospitals and public health agencies are keeping a watchful eye on enterovirus D-68, a respiratory illness that can be particularly dangerous for young people with asthma.

There are no confirmed cases in Quebec so far, however, the virus that has made hundreds of children in the U.S. sick has arrived in Canada.    

Eighteen children in Alberta are confirmed to be infected with enterovirus D-68.

Caroline Quach, a pediatric infectious disease consultant at the Montreal Children's Hospital, said this year her hospital has seen double the number of enterovirus cases than there were at this time last year.

Quach said it’s unusual to see so many infections at this time of year.

She said 120 children so far have tested positive for enterovirus — but not enterovirus D-68.

The difference, she said, is that enterovirus D-68 is more likely to cause respiratory distress for children with asthma and other respiratory illnesses.

Click here to find out the eight things you need to know about enterovirus D-68.