Measles Is Back In NYC — Is This The Reason?

IMG_0097_rPhotographed By Jessica Nash.
If drug-resistant gonorrhea wasn't enough to scare the pants off of you, maybe this'll do the trick. Measles — you know, that terrible-sounding disease you (hopefully) got vaccinated for when you were a kid — has officially returned to New York City, with 19 cases (and counting) in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and the Bronx.
Advertisement
Thanks to advances in modern medicine — namely, the vaccine that has been administered to virtually all American children in the last few decades, measles was considered eradicated in 2000. Last year, though, the disease came creeping back into the national consciousness, with more than a few reported outbreaks around the country. And, 2014 looks to be on track to break records in terms of measles cases, with the NYC outbreak following equally scary situations in LA and the Bay Area.
Of course, the last few years have also seen the emergence of an increasingly vocal anti-vaccination movement. Brought into the mainstream by the likes of Katie Couric, Jenny McCarthy, and, most recently, Kristin Cavallari, the "anti-vax" crowd has become a lightning rod of controversy on the Internet for their position that vaccines are not only unnecessary, but could cause everything from autism to schizophrenia.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, in the wake of the measles outbreak, numerous media outlets have drawn connections between this growing trend toward refusing standard vaccinations for newborns (such as the measles vaccine) and the reemergence of preventable, previously eradicated diseases. From measles to the recent cases of polio in Syria (which are thought to be the result of a lapse in the distribution of the polio vaccine that was at one time administered to every child in that country), many doctors (and frightened parents) are decrying the "lunacy" of parents who refuse to vaccinate their children against contagious, life-threatening, preventable illnesses.
But, others think the issue isn't anywhere near that simple. NYC-based physician Dr. Frank Lipman says, “I think the vaccine issue is very nuanced. It’s not a black or white issue.” He points to a study suggesting that the current measles vaccine may not be as protective as it used to be, citing this as evidence that it may be a mistake to hold anti-vax sentiment as totally responsible for the re-emergence of measles in America.
Of course, any claims one way or the other must be taken with a massive handful of salt — we simply don't have the numbers we need to determine the effect of the anti-vax movement on this particular situation. One thing's for sure, though: Measles is back — and there's still a vaccine that could potentially protect you (and your current and/or future children) from it. (The Daily Beast)
Advertisement

More from Trends

When Brad and Lin Mitchell's daughter arrived six weeks early, they spent a lot of time in the hospital with their newborn, Lillian. The couple truly ...
On Tuesday, Kim Kardashian rallied her 48 million Twitter followers toward a good cause — and boy, did they listen. In a series of tweets, Kardashian ...
Nearly a month after Selena Gomez announced she would be taking time off from work to focus on her ongoing battle with lupus, her friend Michael B. ...
In Status: Stressed, Refinery29 is teaming up with Secret, the expert in stress sweat, to have an honest, passionate conversation about the role of stress...
Earlier this year, it was reported that women are having kids later than ever — and now we may know why. According to research from the Fertility ...
With the ubiquity of the Dougie, the whip, and the New Jersey running man in popular culture, many have probably accepted these dances as mere trends. In...
One mom has a bone to pick with modern-day parenting, and it all has to do with vitamins. In a now-viral Facebook post, Bunmi Laditan lamented the ...
(Paid Content) In this age of label-aversion, hookup apps, and social-media flirtation (nothing says romance like a DM, right?), few would disagree that ...
Can you boost your self-esteem just by changing the way you stand? For years, a few scientists — most recognizably one by the name of Amy Cuddy, PhD (...
You probably already know that Donald Trump has a record of making sexist comments. But a new ad from Hillary Clinton's campaign powerfully highlights ...
When photographer Roger Kisby shot the Adult Video News Awards for the first time last year, he wasn't sure what to expect. Once there, he was drawn to the...
This article was originally published on April 8, 2016. Photographer Marcos Alberti's photo project, 3 Glasses Later, could be considered a probing ...
It was the breakup heard 'round the world: On Tuesday, we learned that Brangelina was officially no more. Then, as we were all recovering from the news, ...
Many of us can probably remember being told at some point during grade school that the pesky little boy who won't stop pulling on our pigtails or throwing ...