With talks of major advancements in medicine like an HIV cure and genetic editing, no one imagined that America would be infiltrated by a disease we conquered almost 20 years ago.
Health clinics in NY are offering free vaccinations in an attempt to stem the problem.
The health minister said that he would consult European Union colleagues on how to make vaccines compulsory following an increase in the number of measles and mumps cases. At the time, my medical colleagues and I hailed the end of this risky virus that infected more than 4 million people per year, hospitalized 50,000, and killed 500, before the measles vaccine program began in 1963.
Ross, who was deputy health commissioner at the time, said the church ran a school with about 1,000 children, none of whom were vaccinated. Two drops of vaccination can lead to the prevention of Measles. The "epicenter" of the outbreak is in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, where vaccination rates among Orthodox Jews are particularly low. There are reports of handbooks targeting the Orthodox community, arguing vaccines are not kosher or misrepresenting the danger of measles.
Governor of Washington Jay Inslee also declared a state of emergency in January, urging immunization and citing the measles outbreak as "an extreme public health risk", according to a CNN article. One of them was Cindy Scher, mother of four children age 7 to 17, all of whom have been vaccinated.
The outbreak is part of a broader resurgence in the United States, with 465 cases reported in 19 states this year.
Sussman also represented a group of parents in suburban Rockland County who challenged the county executive's order barring unvaccinated children from indoor public spaces.
Numerous parents hosting these parties have received misinformation about the safety of vaccinations, others claim that extreme religious beliefs drive their decision to not vaccinate their children.
Dozens of free vaccination clinics have been organized around the county - including one Friday in the town of Haverstraw - with 17,654 doses of vaccine administered to date.
Junior biology major Caleb Gruber said, for him, appreciating the ability to practice advanced medicine and create vaccines is an expression of faith. But that's an expensive treatment route that doesn't protect everyone, he said.
This year, the World Health Organization ranked "vaccine hesitancy" in its list of the 10 biggest threats to global health.
The outbreak has largely been concentrated in the Orthodox Jewish community in Brooklyn.
"That is the defining experience which is what it may take to break through with those who are not vaccinating their children", he added. "We've seen a large increase in the number of people vaccinated in these neighborhoods, but as Passover approaches, we need to do all we can to ensure more people get the vaccine". And, if that's not enough of a reason to be vaccinated, she said, the public cost of tracking cases and quarantining their contacts with exposure to the disease can be extraordinary.
Coffey said there can be cases where vaccines can give bad results, but the good far outweighs the bad.