An outbreak of measles linked with Disneyland park of California has quickly triggered a debate over child vaccinations nationwide.
So far, the health officials have reported more than 100 confirmed cases of measles with California being the worst hit state, where 91 cases have been confirmed.
Out of the 91 cases of the contagious disease, the California Department of Public Health has found association of at least 58 cases to the Disneyland outbreak.
The health experts said that even if no measles deaths have been reported so far, concerns as well as attention over the health scare has been building. The rigorous debate over the serious health threat even reached the White House on Friday, where spokesperson Josh Earnest defended vaccinations against the communicable disease as sound science.
“The science on this is really clear. People must listen to the health officials who have been continuously encouraging for more and more vaccinations,” Earnest said.
Earlier this week, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has directly held the anti-vaccine movement responsible for the measles outbreak.
Anne Schuchat, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases head, said, “The problem is not that the measles vaccine not working. This is a problem of the measles vaccine not being used. It is frustrating that some people have opted out of vaccination.”
A significant majority of people abide by the mandatory vaccination laws set by the states, but there exist exemptions who are opposed to it for mostly personal reasons.
According to Schuchat, nearly 79 percent of infected people in 2014 said that they had chosen not to take vaccination doses due to their “personal beliefs”.
Health experts said there are many who opt not to vaccinate their children citing religious or other reasons.
According to The New York Times’ Saturday report, the anti-vaccine movement largely has its traces into a medical journal report that indicated vaccines could cause autism.
Even thought the research report was later withdrawn, but a significant number of people continued to belief autism and vaccination shared some link.
The NYT report also underscored “a particular subculture of well-educated and largely wealthy families, many living in palmy enclaves around San Francisco and Los Angeles, who are trying to carve out ‘all-natural’ lives for their children.”