Measles: NYC health officials declare a public health emergency, mandate vaccinations

Measles: NYC health officials declare a public health emergency, mandate vaccinations

Measles: NYC health officials declare a public health emergency, mandate vaccinations

"There's no question that vaccines are safe, effective and life-saving", de Blasio said in a statement.

Earlier this week, the city ordered religious schools and day care programs serving that community to exclude unvaccinated students or risk being closed down. All but 39 of the confirmed cases are in children. Extreme cases show 1 in 1,000 people suffering brain swelling, which could lead to brain damage. The CDC recommends that children get two doses of MMR vaccine.

The city's health department ordered Monday for all yeshivas, which are Jewish education centers, to bar students who have not received the measles vaccine from class or face possible closure, reported NBC News. Those who are uninsured will pay what they can afford, de Blasio said, and those who cannot afford the vaccination will receive it free.

The emergency requires vaccinations for people exposed to the virus and applies only to those who live in four ZIP codes in Williamsburg.

The outbreak began when an unvaccinated child visited Israel, where thousands of people have been sick, contracted the disease, and came back to Brooklyn. This is the second-greatest number of cases reported in the US since measles was eliminated in 2000, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

New York City accounted for about two-thirds of all US measles cases reported last week.

Under the order, any person living in the affected areas who has not been vaccinated must be immunised within 48 hours.

The majority of cases have been among members of Brooklyn's Orthodox Jewish community, primarily in parts of Brooklyn's Williamsburg and Borough Park neighborhoods.

Measles has been a nationally notifiable disease in the United States since 1912.

At least 285 confirmed cases of measles in Brooklyn and Queens have been reported since October, according to the New York City Health Department. One school that violated the mandate has been linked to more than 40 cases, the health department said. Once people have become infected by measles, their bodies build up their immune systems to prevent new inflections. In Rockland, officials declared a countywide state of emergency related to measles, and banned unvaccinated children from visiting public places.

That order was overturned by a state judge on Friday, local media reported. "I know that getting vaccinated is far safer than getting measles".

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