Measles, once common in the US prior to aggressive vaccination campaigns that started in the 1960s, is back on the rise. A decade ago, there were less than 100 cases a year. In 2019, we are not even to the half way point and have nearly 1,000.
Overall, across the US vaccinations have remained high, but we are seeing pockets of outbreaks that are happening in specific communities where parents have refused the recommended shots, according to U.S. health officials.
Dr. Mark Roberts, chair of health policy and management at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health said “What's causing these outbreaks is lack of vaccination.”
While illnesses have been reported across the US, totally 26 states, the vast majority of the illnesses are in New York City. The outbreak began around October of 2018 and it is already the largest localized measles outbreak in the United States in nearly 30 years.
Measles, as an illness, is incredibly contagious which is also not helping to limit the number of non-vaccinated people getting sick.
The CDC is recommending a combination vaccine that covers measles-mumps-rubella for everyone ages 1 year and up so long as you have not had the disease as a child.