US measles outbreak: The parents are abandoning vaccines, but we need to fight back

The infection figures aren’t great and we’re still seeing a resurgence of unvaccinated kids coming into school.

However, the numbers of kids in the US who refuse to be vaccinated has leveled off in the last year (although by no means have they gone away), and yet we’re still seeing them get sick anyway.

CNN recently wrote about the lack of progress in vaccination rates and a continuing epidemic of measles in the US and globally. CNN also had a lengthy editorial written by Senator John McCain last month urging health officials to re-examine the childhood vaccine data and their methods.

McCain explains in part that health officials have been incentivized to push vaccines on schools, particularly in the absence of other health issues:

Here’s the problem with school vaccination rates: Schools are often pressured by health officials and parents to accept unvaccinated children. In the absence of other serious health problems, health officials and parents are persuaded by the argument that it is the best thing for the children’s health. […] Some studies question the benefits of childhood vaccines. The problem with claims is that any debate that involves statistics and scientific data is a wonky and serious business. You can question the efficacy and effectiveness of vaccines. You can discuss the selection of which vaccines are given. You can discuss the effects on the immune system of vaccines. You can debate whether certain types of vaccines are justifiable or medically necessary. But you cannot do anything but ignore reality.

In other words, more and more kids in our schools are falling ill, largely because they’ve been left unprotected.

This year there was an outbreak in a few school districts, although the danger isn’t localized to specific areas. We’re seeing a rise in unvaccinated kids in big cities:

“A 6 percent surge in unvaccinated children in one county prompted officials to close schools in Atlanta, Baldwin County, Alabama, and others in central and eastern Kentucky this week. In all, about 500 unvaccinated kids now attend daycare or school in those counties after health officials responded to the new cases,” CNN says.

If we don’t start vaccinating these kids, it will be heartbreaking to see the cases rise into the thousands more we’ve seen in recent years.

However, the current boom in the number of kids getting polio means that we have an opportunity to do something about it.

The polio virus is spread by one of its microscopic version which are called polioviruses. Polio (also called poliomyelitis, poliomyelitis, polio virus or poliomyelitis) is the only infectious polio virus that has been found to exist in all five population groups, all five modes of transmission, all five host population groups and all five influenza strains, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The high number of cases this year has a lot to do with what has been called, “a perfect storm of bad luck.”

This case of polio in the US is the largest outbreak since 1988, when there were 901 cases.

Polio has been wiped out in most countries, except Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria. Only six other countries have either the wild poliovirus or people carrying it who are vulnerable to transmission, which means there are many more susceptible people in the US than there have been before.

Before this year, only one-third of cases were in developed countries and we had never had this many cases in America.

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