It started with a confirmed case of measles in a child in late December.
There were soon reports of more cases.
And more cases.
The Pacific Northwest Measles Outbreak of 2019
But the measles cases didn’t stay in Clark County.
As with other recent large measles outbreaks, cases soon spread to neighboring counties.
As of late January, there are now measles cases linked to this ongoing outbreak in Clark County and King County (Washington) and Multnomah County (Oregon).
The rapid growth of the outbreak led Clark County to declare a local public health emergency and Washington’ governor to declare a State of Emergency in all counties in the state of Washington.
“The measles outbreak and its effects impact the life and health of our people, as well as the economy of Washington State, and is a public disaster that affects life, health, property or the public peace.”Governor Jay Inslee on proclaiming a State of Emergency
Why so much concern?
Are you familiar with the immunization rates in this part of the country? About the only good thing you can say about Washington’s immunization rates are that they are better than Oregon‘s…
And a recipe for disaster. These outbreaks are getting harder to control, are lasting longer, and are getting bigger and bigger.
Also remember that the last measles death in the United States, in 2015, was a woman who got caught up in a measles outbreak in Clallam County. Why didn’t that trigger folks in the area to get Vaccinated?
|Clark County (WA)||70 cases|
|King County (WA)||1 case|
|Multonomah County (OR)||4 case|
How many people will get sick in the Pacific Northwest Measles Outbreak of 2019 before it ends?
Are they going to realize that unless they are malnourished or have a vitamin deficiency, that taking extra vitamin A that you order from someone’s online store will not reduce their risk of severe complications if their unvaccinated child gets measles?
“Please contact your pediatrician or doctor if your child is scary sick, struggling to breathe or unable to eat or very lethargic or otherwise seriously ill. Let them know you are worried they may have measles so they can arrange not to contaminate the waiting room or the whole office.”Paul Thomas, Integrative Pediatrician
Getting vaccinated can help keep your kids from getting “scary sick” from measles…
“The above recommendations are informational only. Please consult with your doctor before implementing anything you might learn here.”Paul Thomas, Integrative Pediatrician
The only good advice he gives.
And for the anti-vaccine folks who are asking:
- it isn’t going to be shedding or a vaccine strain that caused the outbreak
- everyone or almost everyone in the outbreak is going to be unvaccinated
- the measles vaccine does work against all the different genotypes of measles
- more people don’t die from getting the MMR or any other vaccine than from the diseases they protect us against
- whether the death rate of measles is 1 in 1000 or 1 in 10,000 cases, remember that just before the measles vaccine came out, in the early 1960s, nearly 500 people would die of measles each year. And it isn’t that a person dies after 1,000 or 10,000 cases. With more cases, there is just a higher chance that someone will eventually die.
More on The Pacific Northwest Measles Outbreak of 2019
- What to Do If Your Child Is Exposed to Measles
- Measles Vaccines vs Measles Strains
- How Contagious Is Measles?
- Why Do We Only Worry About Measles?
- The Myth That Measles Isn’t Deadly
- Can MMR Shedding Start a Measles Outbreak?
- Who Dies with Measles?
- Does Having Measles Protect You from Cancer?
- A History of Measles Outbreaks in United States
- Measles Deaths in the 21st Century
- When Was the Last Measles Death in the United States?
- How Many People Get Measles Each Year?
- Costs of a Measles Outbreak
- CDC – Measles Cases and Outbreaks
- Measles – Timeline | History of Vaccine
- IAC – Ask the Experts about MMR
- Measles outbreak in Washington State 2019
- Pacific Northwest Measles Outbreak Winter 2019
- Measles Outbreak: Winter 2019 Oregon exposures
- Washington School Immunization Reports
- Oregon Immunization Program Data and Reports
- Oregon school vaccination rates
- Low vaccination rates put some Oregon schools at high risk for measles