Published: Sat, April 13, 2019
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

Measles emergency in NYC

Measles emergency in NYC

Rockland County of NY declared a state of emergency as its measles outbreak entered its 26th week, last week, according to NBC. Latimer says none of the children attend public schools or childcare programs. But they said they were taking additional steps to control the outbreak in advance of Passover, when some families may travel overseas to areas in Israel or Europe that are experiencing measles outbreaks.

Sussman also represented a group of parents in suburban Rockland County who challenged the county executive's order barring unvaccinated children from indoor public spaces. But unvaccinated children and adults pose very real dangers to infants too young to be vaccinated, to people with compromised immune systems (such as those undergoing cancer treatment), and to pregnant women whose unborn babies can be infected.

America's largest urban area, New York City, has taken the extraordinary move of making vaccinations mandatory for some people who may have been exposed to the measles virus in a hard-hit, predominantly Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn.

The health officials will try to persuade any unvaccinated person who has been exposed to measles to get the vaccine. "But I don't see any side effects", she said. In this way, the anti-vaxx movement has shown itself to pose a danger to public health founded upon discredited science. Many studies have proven vaccines do not cause autism, and the majority of rabbis say vaccinations are healthy and kosher.

"It's really scary out there", she said.

And we ask given continued fears in some communities around vaccines despite years of overwhelming scientific consensus about their safety, do we need to change how we talk about vaccines?

Measles symptoms start with a fever, runny nose, cough, red eyes, and sore throat. She said people should call ahead and make arrangements.


Under the new rules, anyone who has not received the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine or does not have evidence of immunity risks a fine of $1,000.

"It lasts in the air for hours after that person leaves the room", Amler said.

Latimer said it would be under Amler's authority to declare any county-wide measures to contain the spread of the virus. Those personal rights, however, at some point in time cross over and impact the rights of others.

"It's shocking that these things that I didn't worry about with my kids because they could be vaccinated - all of a sudden parents have to worry about their children getting life-threatening diseases", Siepser said.

"I don't expect that people are running out [to get vaccinated]. It protects your child", Latimer said.

At a time when Rockland County is attempting to get a grip on the measles epidemic and efforts to convince unvaccinated residents to get the MMR shots, new cases of the virus have been confirmed in adjacent counties.

David R. Curry, executive director of the Center for Vaccine Ethics and Policy, told China Daily: "Once your child is exposed and has measles, there is no better convincing argument to parents who may be questioning whether vaccinations work than when they have to come to grips with the fact that their child, because they were unvaccinated, suddenly has a potentially risky disease".

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