Anti-Vax measles outbreak in Portland area

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ASPartOfMe
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25 Jan 2019, 4:40 am

Officials in anti-vaccination ‘hotspot’ near Portland declare an emergency over measles outbreak

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A quickly escalating measles outbreak around Portland, Ore., has led health officials in nearby Clark County, Wash., to declare a public health emergency as they warn that people infected with the highly contagious virus have visited schools and churches, a dentist’s office, a Costco, an Ikea and an Amazon locker pickup station.

Someone with measles was at Concourse D of the Portland International Airport on Jan. 7, the county’s public health department advised. An infected person attended a Portland Trail Blazers home game Jan. 11.

At the beginning of last week, there were only a handful of confirmed cases. On Friday, the day the emergency was declared, there were 19. By Sunday, that number had grown to 21. The latest update came Tuesday, when county officials said they had confirmed 23 cases and were investigating two more suspected cases. The vast majority of those who have fallen ill had not been immunized.

State data shows that 7.9 percent of children in Clark County were exempt in the 2017-2018 school year from vaccines required for kindergarten entry, which includes the two-dose course for measles that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says is 97 percent effective. Only 1.2 percent of the children had a medical dispensation, meaning that nearly 7 percent were not immunized for personal or religious reasons. Nationally, about 2 percent of children went without required immunizations for nonmedical reasons.

The high rate of nonmedical exemption for vaccines is what makes the Portland area, which sits across the Columbia River from Clark County, a “hotspot” for outbreaks, according to Peter J. Hotez, a professor of pediatrics and dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.

Experts advised that the outbreak could still be in its infancy. The incubation period of the virus averages two weeks, and it can be spread four days before a rash makes its onset obvious.

Because measles is among the most highly contagious of all infectious diseases, it is bound to flare up in areas with low vaccination rates, Hotez said. He tracked this effect in a paper last year in the Public Library of Science, linking the number of philosophical exemptions, which has climbed since 2009 in 12 of the 18 states that allow them, to increasing outbreaks.

The problem is especially pronounced, the paper found, in more than a dozen “hotspot metropolitan areas,” including Portland and Seattle in the Northwest, Phoenix in the Southwest and Detroit in the Midwest.

Public health experts are sounding alarms about the geographical clustering of people who refuse to immunize themselves, which creates vulnerabilities despite the overall high rate of vaccination. In November, Asheville, N.C., another stronghold of the anti-vaccination movement, succumbed to the state’s worst chickenpox outbreak since a vaccine for the infection became available more than two decades ago.

Opposition to compulsory vaccination in the Pacific Northwest dates to the Progressive Era and continues despite major medical breakthroughs.

In 2000, public health officials declared measles eliminated in the United States because more than a year had gone by without continuous transmission of the disease.

Because measles is still endemic in parts of the world, said Opel, “periodic introduction by people traveling is what’s causing frequent outbreaks here.

While the illness often begins with cold-like symptoms and a rash, doctors emphasized that many infected people suffer from additional complications, including pneumonia and, in more serious cases, inflammation of the brain known as encephalitis and even seizures.

“It’s not a benign illness,” Opel said.


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lostonearth35
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25 Jan 2019, 2:43 pm

I read earlier today that the Doomsday Clock is still two minutes to midnight. I'm, kind of surprised it hasn't been moved further ahead because of the anti-vaxxers.

Oh well. At least the people who build those cute little child-sized coffins will be making a fortune. :roll:



Drake
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27 Jan 2019, 10:05 am

Quote:
Opposition to compulsory vaccination in the Pacific Northwest dates to the Regressive Era and continues despite major medical breakthroughs.

Fixed. 8)

Portland and Seattle. Both full of Antifa, SJWs and regressives. Don't know about the other two.

I miss the days when progressive actually meant progressive.



AspE
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27 Jan 2019, 12:12 pm

Drake wrote:
Quote:
Opposition to compulsory vaccination in the Pacific Northwest dates to the Regressive Era and continues despite major medical breakthroughs.

Fixed. 8)

Portland and Seattle. Both full of Antifa, SJWs and regressives. Don't know about the other two.

I miss the days when progressive actually meant progressive.

f*****g Portland man. Being progressive doesn't mean you get to ignore science.