In The Politics of Autism, I look at the discredited notion that vaccines cause autism. Twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms have helped spread this dangerous myth. Measles can kill.
From January 1 to August 15, 2019, 1,203 individual cases of measles have been confirmed in 30 states. This is an increase of 21 cases from the previous week. This is the greatest number of cases reported in the U.S. since 1992 and since measles was declared eliminated in 2000.
Kate Tillotson at WWMT Michigan:
The measles outbreak of 2019 is weighing on the minds of health care providers as college students return to campus this fall. They'll be welcomed by cramped dorm rooms and crowded classrooms, which can be breeding grounds for viruses. It's a concern because earlier in the year, between January and April, measles infected at least 700 people in 20 states in the U.S.
"The real issue is that measles is highly contagious, it's one of the most contagious diseases that we deal with," said Dr. David Davenport, who provides internal medicine and infectious disease care at Ascension Borgess Hospital in Kalamazoo. "Crowded social events can create a nightmare situation," he said.
Davenport pointed to two examples of measles outbreaks in higher educational institutions last April. Hundreds of students, faculty, and staff at California State University-Los Angeles, and the University of California at Los Angeles, were quarantined due to possible measles exposure. Some were even instructed to stay home while the source of the infection was detected. The scare came during the nation's first measles outbreak since the disease was declared eliminated in 2000.