AZDHS: Rise in immunization exemptions puts state at risk for an outbreak

Randy Kelley
April 19, 2019

Global measles cases are rising for the third year in a row, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said, reporting that recorded cases between January and March were 300 per cent higher than in the same period last year.

Those born before 1957 or who previously had measles or had two measles vaccine shots are considered immune because of the vaccine's high rate of effectiveness.

Most U.S. measles cases begin with someone who had come from or traveled to Europe, rather than African or Central American countries, said Daniel Salmon, director of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Vaccine Safety.

"While this data is provisional and not yet complete, it indicates a clear trend". Numerous cases are associated with travelers returning from countries that are also experiencing outbreaks, including Israel and the Philippines. World Health Organization said less than one in 10 cases are reportedly globally.

Since the beginning of 2019, 555 cases of measles have been confirmed in the United States, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A total of 555 cases of measles have been recorded in the United States since January 1, a lot of them in NY and Clark County in Washington state.

Officials said that the risk remains high for those who are unvaccinated or under-vaccinated and who travel to communities here or overseas where measles cases are raging.

In America, unvaccinated children have been banned from public areas such as shopping centres and schools as a measles outbreak has gripped New York City.

This means there are "many people who are adults now who only received one dose" of MMR, said Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Baltimore.

Last year, the disease spread through Brooklyn schools and synagogues among children who had never been vaccinated or had not had the recommended followup shot between the ages of four and six years old.

The parents also say they have obtained religious exemptions from obtaining the vaccine, and the orders violate the First Amendment by imposing criminal penalties for free exercise of religious beliefs.

It is also the second-largest number of cases to be reported in a single year so far since 2000. The cases were found in 20 states spanning the country. The most before the 2014 outbreak was 963 cases in 1994.

"The majority of people who got measles were unvaccinated", the CDC noted.

At least 800 children have died from measles since September in Madagascar, where creeping malnutrition and a history of poor immunization are leading the world's worst outbreak. It has not mutated to become more infectious or more unsafe.

"It is unacceptable to sit back and do nothing as more of our residents fall ill to this deadly disease and court decisions aside, we will never do that", Rockland County Executive Ed Day said in a statement Tuesday.

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