As Measles Cases Grow, Lawmakers Look To Change Vaccination Law

The ongoing measles outbreak in the Pacific Northwest that prompted the declaration of a public health emergency in Washington State, has health officials in Washoe County urging everyone to ensure they are vaccinated or otherwise protected against the highly contagious disease. "We've since looked at millions of kids completely debunking that there's any link between autism and [the vaccine]".

"Americans who travel overseas might be surprised to find out that a number of the countries where measles is being transmitted are countries that would be surprising to them", Dr. Nancy Messonnier the director of the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, said. For more information on the current measles outbreak, please visit Washington State 2019 Measles Outbreak.

Three cases of measles have been confirmed among one Atlanta, Georgia family, health officials reported. "We have no measles cases associated with this outbreak and we have no measles at all". Thirty-four were not immunised against the disease. Health officials say 41 of the cases are in Clark County, with the remaining case coming from King County.

Clark County Public Health has established a call center for questions related to the investigation.

Thirty-one of the confirmed patients had not been vaccinated against measles.

Dr. Messonnier contends that there are no other alternatives to vaccination and that best way to stop this outbreak in its tracks is to make sure that everybody gets vaccinated.

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The vaccine has been part of routine childhood shots for decades, and measles was declared eliminated in the U.S.in 2000. One dose of the measles vaccine gives 93 percent lifelong immunity; a second dose between ages 4 and 6 provides 97 percent immunity.

But the vaccine is less effective in those under a year old which is why it is generally not given to infants.

Jocelyn Smith is terrified her youngest son, who is 11 months, will get measles.

None of the infected people were vaccinated and they are no longer contagious.

Those who may have been exposed should watch for early symptoms of high fever, malaise and red eyes, followed by a rash that starts on the head and moves down the body.

The virus, spread by coughing or sneezing, can remain in the air for up to two hours in an isolated space.

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