Anti-vaxxer escalates from wishing children dead to threatening to kill adult lawmakers

A Pentagon cybersecurity contractor threatened to murder Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) if she advanced a bill to vaccinate children in public schools, The Daily Beast reports today. Yes, we are in a dystopian hellscape. Read the rest

Unvaccinated minors banned from public places in NY's Rockland County

In response to a spreading measles epidemic in NY State, Rockland County has banned unvaccinated minors from appearing in public.

Failure to vaccinate an eligible child should be a crime.

Daily Beast:

Rockland County, New York, will declare a state of emergency Tuesday due to an ongoing measles outbreak, according to a county news release. Beginning at midnight, anyone who is under 18 and not vaccinated against the measles will be banned from public places, according to the release. It is unclear how the rule will be enforced. This ban will last until the declaration expires in 30 days, or until people are vaccinated. There are currently 151 confirmed reported cases of measles in the county, according to health officials. Health officials say the best way to help protect yourself and the community is to remain up-to-date with measles vaccinations. Rockland County Executive Ed Day will hold a press conference at 2 p.m. ET to discuss the state of emergency.

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Our social contract demands people able to be vaccinated get vaccinated

If you fail to vaccinate an eligible child you are willfully endangering not only that child but everyone else's. This should be a crime.

Scientific American: Read the rest

Small number of Facebook Pages did 46% of top 10,000 posts for or against vaccines

About 20% of the total posts were found to have been generated by seven anti-vax Pages.

Measles warning in Los Angeles, New York outbreak surges

Anti-vaxxers are winning the war on life. Measles outbreaks are happening with increasing frequency.

US News and World Report:

In late December, one person who was sick with the highly contagious viral infection visited several stores and restaurants in Malibu, Pasadena and Santa Monica while contagious, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Officials said there is no remaining risk in those areas, but people who may have been near the infected person should watch for any symptoms of the illness, which is spread through cough or sneeze and causes fever, red eyes and a rash. Most people who haven't been immunized will get measles if they are exposed to the virus, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said.

"If you think that you or someone you know has been exposed to or has measles, contact your healthcare provider by phone right away before going in," Dr. Muntu Davis, the county's health officer, said in a statement.

The alert comes amid a slew of measles outbreaks in recent months, nearly two decades after the disease was declared eliminated in the U.S.

New York, for example, has seen more than 160 cases since September and is experiencing what Dr. Howard Zucker, the state health commissioner, called "the largest measles outbreak that New York state has had in recent history," CNN reported.

In 2018, a total of 349 cases in 26 states and the District of Columbia were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, up from 120 cases in 2017.

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Vaccinations against Ebola begin in Congolese town of Bikoro

Last week, officials in charge of stemming the latest outbreak of Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo began the process of inoculating healthcare workers and other individuals who may have come in direct contact with infect individuals, in the Congolese city of Mbandaka. According to The Globe & Mail, inoculations are now also being doled out in Bikoro, a town in the northwest of Congo, where 5 of the 12 confirmed cases of Ebola are believed to have originated.

It’s believed that there are at least 56 cases of the Ebola: 35 cases have been confirmed, leaving 13 probable cases and 13 suspected cases for doctors to deal with and patients to fret over.

From The Globe & Mail:

Amid worries of the spread of Ebola, several schools in the Iboko health zone, about 180 kilometres (112 miles) southeast of Mbandaka, have been closed, according to reports by U.N.-backed Radio Okapi.

Many residents in one of the Iboko localities told Radio Okapi that they prefer to stay at home to avoid infection, following the death of a woman who had Ebola in the nearby Bobala area.

One resident said that what they first thought were rumours were becoming reality with the death and that they were very scared to interact. Four confirmed Ebola deaths have taken place in the Iboko health zone, according to Congo’s health ministry.

Given that the hemorrhagic fever-causing virus has up to a 90% chance of killing those that it infects, to say that such precautions and the fear that those living in areas where the virus has cropped up during this most recent outbreak are reasonable would be an understatement. Read the rest

Vaccination fears fuel Minnesota measles outbreak

A Somali-American community has been struck with an outbreak of the measles in St. Louis Park, Minnesota. Dr. Mahab Ururshe struggles to convince recent emigres that austism is not a result of the vaccine.

Via ABC:

Dr. Mahab Ururshe, a pediatrician at Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, is originally from Somalia and says he still sees many parents afraid of vaccines, even though numerous studies have shown no link between autism and vaccines.

The parents say, "I know measles, I have had it and my mom had it -- better to have measles than autism," Ururshe told ABC News.

In order to convince some parents that vaccines are safe, Ururshe has spent long periods of time explaining that studies have found no link between vaccines and autism. He also has to point out that the disease can be deadly and that, in Somalia, there was no accurate data compiled about measles complications.

Severe complications from measles include pneumonia and inflammation of the brain and a condition called subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) that is fatal and more common in infants, according to the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates one to two of every 1,000 infected children dies from the disease.

Ururshe also tells parents that despite dramatically lowered rates of vaccination in the Somali community in recent years, rates of autism have continued to rise. While parents often believe him, Ururshe said some remain too frightened to act.

Read the rest