City Works To Stem Worst Measles Outbreak In Recent History

Fifty-five of cases of the childhood virus have affected unvaccinated children in Borough Park, Bensonhurst, Midwood/Marine Park and Williamsburg since October, according to the city Department of Health.

"Since then, there have been additional children from Brooklyn who were unvaccinated and acquired measles while in Israel", the Health Department said.

"Children who did not travel were also infected in Brooklyn or Rockland County".

The measles outbreak in Brooklyn began when an unvaccinated child was infected on a trip to Israel, which also is seeing a large spread of the disease. In terms of identifying a possible case of measles, symptoms often mimic those of the common cold: fever, muscle pain, runny nose, and sore throat, along with a telltale blotchy red skin rash.

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Activists from the ruling African National Congress and left-wing Economic Freedom Fighters were among the chanting crowd. However at least one of the children's mothers, who does not wish to be identified, was furious with the connotations.

Infants ages 6 months to 11 months old should also receive MMR vaccines before traveling internationally and anyone born after January 1, 1957, who hasn't been vaccinated or doesn't have a blood test proving their immunity to measles should receive two doses of the MMR vaccine, the NYC health department said. More than 40,000 educational flyers have been distributed to homes in the hardest-hit communities, and more than two dozen schools and daycare centers closed because of low vaccination rates, according to an NBC News report.

"This outbreak is related to the large measles outbreak that is now going on in Israel", said Dr. Jane Zucker with the city's Health Department. "That the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine works and it is safe and effective", Zucker told WCBS 880. Since September, the Empire State has recorded 167 cases of the measles, a highly infectious disease for which there is a widely available vaccine.

New York State is in the middle of its worst measles epidemic in decades.

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