Measles Outbreak In NY Prompts Ban On Unvaccinated Minors
The new wave of parents who decide not to vaccinate their children is having devastating effects on our country. The Anti-Vax Movement has grown exponentially over the last decade, despite concrete evidence contradicting the danger of vaccinations. The United States is a country based on freedom and the right to believe in what suits you. At what price do we allow unvaccinated children to mingle amongst the public?
According to CNN, “Unvaccinated people under age 18 are banned from public places in Rockland County, New York.” This decision was made in light of the recent Measles outbreak that has affected 153 people in the country alone. An unvaccinated resident was infected with Measles while visiting Israel and then returned home.
This is just one of many cases brought to light about the danger of diseases that were eradicated years ago. The United States announced in the year 2000 that Measles was no longer present in the country. The CDC has reported that there have been 314 cases of the disease this year. Measles begins with flu-like symptoms and is followed by a red bumpy rash covering the body. It is not usually deadly. However, it can cause lifelong complications and in rare cases death.
The outbreak in New York proves how quickly one person can spread Measles and other once extinct contagious diseases. Other dangerous diseases that vaccines protect us from are Polio, Pertussis (Whooping Cough), and Mumps. Most vaccinations are given to babies and young children in hopes that chances of contact with infectious disease are low. Families that choose not to vaccinate risk the welfare of babies who have not yet received a certain vaccine because they are not old enough. The right to not vaccinate is becoming less of a right to believe and more a deadly decision that can affect those who do not have a choice.
Education about diseases and their vaccines is the only way to fight the Anti-Vax Movement. In modern times, we are lucky to have the medicine now to combat once devastating illnesses. Despite the misinformation causing parents not to vaccinate, there is hope that real information will filter through to the children. Just last month, an Ohio Teen chose to get all of the vaccines that his parents deprived him of throughout his childhood. Ethan Lindenberger of Norwalk, OH, decided to go against his parent’s wishes on his eighteenth birthday. In turn, Ethan has inspired other Ant-Vax children to do the same when they come of legal age. The fight against infectious diseases battles on, but will only be won with persistence and education.