On Sept. 12, 2013, public health officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) called a press conference to announce that vaccination rates among pre-school children are “high and stable” and “less than 1% are unvaccinated.” More than 90 percent of American toddlers have gotten a measles containing MMR shot by age three, along with many doses of 10 other government recommended vaccines.
159 Measles Cases Reported This Year in U.S.
But health officials warned there have been 159 cases of measles reported so far this year, the second highest number of measles cases reported in one year since 2000. They put the blame on 92 unvaccinated Americans diagnosed with measles who had “philosophical objections” to vaccination, such as orthodox Jews in New York City and Christians attending a church in Texas, which they described as “clusters of people with like-minded beliefs leading them to forgo vaccines.”
There have been no measles-related deaths in the U.S. this year; however one government official said that 160,000 people around the world die from measles every year and the infection is “literally a plane ride away.” She warned that “the measles virus can hang out in the air and if you are in the same waiting room as someone with measles you will get measles if you never had it.”
Americans Born Before 1957 Have Natural Immunity
In the interest of full disclosure, I should acknowledge that when I was a child I did get measles and so did my sister and brother and all my friends. It started off with a fever, runny nose, sore throat and white spots inside our mouths and then an itchy red rash on our faces that spread all over and I remember wearing sunglasses in the house because the light hurt my eyes. My parents and grandparents and their sisters and brothers also had measles when they were children. When I was growing up in the 1950’s, measles, mumps, rubella and chickenpox were infections we all experienced but our parents didn’t worry about those childhood diseases like they worried about polio.
NVIC Helps You Prepare for Flu Season
Before you or your child get a flu shot, visit NVIC.org and access important information about influenza and the flu vaccine.
Watch NVIC’s flu video: Learn the difference between your symptoms and type A and type B influenza because 80 percent of the time, you may be experiencing other respiratory infections that imitate influenza.
Download our new flu vaccine brochure: Learn more about the risks and complications of influenza and the flu vaccine.
Access links to 2013/2014 flu vaccine product inserts: Before getting a flu shot, do your own research by reading vaccine manufacturer product inserts to learn about pre-licensure clinical trials, reported adverse effects, ingredients, contraindications and precautions.
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