CDC and HHS Provide Update about the Measles Outbreak
At the time of this update, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reports over 700 cases of measles from 22 states. And HHS Secretary Alex Azar and CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, MD didn't pull any punches during the CDC National Update on Measles Telebriefing.
According to HHS Secretary Alexa Azar, "Today, the overwhelming majority of parents choose to protect their kids with vaccines. However, we're very concerned about the recent troubling rise in cases of measles, which was declared eliminated from our country in 2000." He continues, "Today, CDC is reporting 704 cases of measles from 22 states. This is the greatest number of cases reported in the U.S. since measles was eliminated." As far as what's behind this most recent outbreak, Secretary Azar said "while most parents are getting their children vaccinated, the vast majority of cases involve children who have not been vaccinated. Everyone should be vaccinated against measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases."
Dr. Redfield reminds us "There are no treatment and no cure for measles and no way to predict how bad a case of measles will be. Some children may have very mild symptoms. Others may face serious complications." He also explains that the current cases in the recent outbreaks "have been among people who have not been vaccinated. And most of those cases have been children under 18 years of age." Additionally, Redfield explained measles is particularly concerning for younger children and older adults due to the potential for complications.
Media Statement of National Infant Immunization Week
In his CDC Media Statement Redfield discussed the safety and effectiveness of vaccines. "I have ensured all of my children and grandchildren are vaccinated on the recommended schedule. Vaccines are safe. Vaccines do not cause autism. Vaccine-preventable diseases are dangerous," said Redfield.
What can healthcare professionals do to help?
According to Redfield, it's "imperative that we correct misinformation and reassure fearful parents, so they protect their children from illnesses with long-lasting health impacts." He is asking providers to encourage both parents and expectant mothers on the important of vaccinating children "for their own protection and to avoid the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases within their families and communities."
Did you know?
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