Apr 03 2014
Several outbreaks of Measles in New York, Los Angeles, Orange County, and even Ontario, Canada, has brought increased attention to the anti-vaccination movement. There has also been an unusual outbreak of Mumps at Ohio State University.
The MMR or Measles-Mumps-Rubella vaccine to stave off these diseases is usually administered to infants. But a large percentage of the new cases are apparently tied to people who are not vaccinated. Some reports have pegged the origins of the Measles outbreaks to the Philippines where a non-vaccinated person might have contracted the disease and unwittingly brought it to the US. Countries like the Philippines and many developing nations are struggling to eradicate infectious diseases through universal vaccination.
Here in the US, while communities like the Amish have opposed vaccination on religious grounds, and poor and minority communities sometimes do not have access to vaccines, there are wealthy, educated Americans who reject vaccination based on the now-discredited link between vaccines and Autism.
GUEST: Arthur Allen, freelance writer based in Washington DC and author of Vaccine: the Controversial Story of Medicine’s Greatest Lifesaver