Friday, 19 April, 2019

NYC's New Policy on Measles Vaccine Prompts Renewed Focus in NJ

New York measles outbreak spreads to more counties NYC's New Policy on Measles Vaccine Prompts Renewed Focus in NJ
Anna Jefferson | 13 April, 2019, 08:40

The order concerns all people living or working in four zip codes of Williamsburg, northwest Brooklyn, where some residents oppose vaccines on religious grounds - although neither Jewish texts nor local Jewish authorities advise against vaccination. "And they may spread measles to people who can not get vaccinated because they are too young or have specific health conditions".

Like all but three USA states, NY requires a series of vaccinations for school-age children but has until now granted exemptions on both medical and religious grounds.

Measles has been confirmed in eight children, ranging in age from 6 months to 14 years old, all of whom live in northern Westchester and were not vaccinated, CBS New York reports.

New York City declared a public health emergency on Tuesday and ordered mandatory vaccinations for measles in a part of Brooklyn that is home to a large Orthodox Jewish community.

Most of this year's measles cases in New Jersey have been linked to an outbreak in Ocean and Monmouth counties, the DOH found, and many originated with travelers who had been infected overseas.

When parents choose not to vaccinate their children, they endanger not only their own child, but also the entire society which surrounds them.

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For that reason, countless rabbinical figures and leaders, including leading rabbis in the Agudath Israel movement and doctors serving these communities, have repeatedly encouraged vaccination in the strongest possible terms. Among serious complications, 1 in 20 patients get pneumonia, and 1 in 1 000 get brain swelling that can lead to seizures, deafness or intellectual disability. Epidemiologists have chronicled how global travel by Orthodox Jews to outbreak areas, closely interrelated Orthodox social networks, and high numbers of Orthodox children at ages most susceptible to a highly contagious disease are key factors in the spread of diseases of this kind (see here and here). "But I don't see any side effects", she said. There is no excuse to use a public health issue - an outbreak we are suffering from - as a platform from which to spew poisonous anti-Semitic rhetoric.

New York Times: New York City Is Requiring Vaccinations Against Measles. And that puts anyone with a compromised immune system in danger-including newborn babies who are too young to be vaccinated, pregnant women, and people with cancer or on immunosuppressive therapies because of transplants.

But, even to some who support vaccination, the $1,000 fine seems excessive.

Westchester borders Rockland County, where measles cases have been concentrated among members of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community. Anyone who is unsure about his/her or their child's vaccination status can work with their health care provider's office or school to obtain their vaccination records. It is transmitted through the air and on surfaces and is contagious before and after bumps show up, which is why it transfers so quickly from person to person. Vaccines are safe and effective.

"Science tells us today that the vaccine does not cause autism, it does not cause learning disability".

"I urge everyone, especially those in affected areas, to get their MMR vaccines to protect their children, families and communities", de Blasio said in a statement.

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