A2: Microbes in the news. Measles Outbreak.

Washington measles outbreak climbs while other states grapple with the disease -CNN


As of the new year, Clark County has confirmed 49 cases of measles. Of those diagnosed with the virus, 41 were not vaccinated with the MMR vaccination. Washington has recently declared a state emergency due to the rise of Measles cases throughout the state.

Washington isn’t the only state that has been affected by measles. California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and Texas have also reported outbreaks as of 2019. A total of about 80 cases this year, with children being the main attributor.

Measles used to be devastating before the vaccination was released in the 1960s, with diagnoses  being in the hundreds of thousands in the US alone. The MMR (Measles,  Mumps, Rubella) vaccination has been about 93% effective in preventing the disease and with a booster that percentage goes up to 97%. It is noted that the sudden rise in the measles outbreak is due to children going unvaccinated.

This relates to what we have discussed in class because we have talked about epidemics, such as the plague. As mentioned above, in the US alone the diagnosed measles counts in a given year were as high as 800,000 in the 60s before the vaccination.

I find this very interesting because I am curious if this will encourage more parents to vaccinate their children more since there has been a debate that vaccines are not necessary, although they have proven to be effective. I didn’t know that the measles  vaccination was so reliable at preventing this virus. It makes me really happy my parents have vaccinated me during my childhood.

I believe that this story is scientifically factual because I did my research on other websites and found the data to be consistent. I also think they did a good job of making their message concise and understandable for the general public to be able to understand.  By using common language, this important message of an outbreak in the US is able to be delivered to US citizens.

Question: How much further will the measles  outbreak progress due to the decline of parents vaccinating their children?