Accordingly, the mayor of New York City has declared a city-wide public health emergency and asked the residents to take necessary action. Which now means that New Yorkers now have to get themselves vaccinated or else face heavy fines. So far, postcards have been distributed in the area of Brooklyn and parts of Manhattan alerting the people about the severity of the issue. The state government was quick to rise in action and will be covering other regions in the near future.
It is important to note that New York state has 285 reported cases of measles since October 2018. As many as 85% of the inflicted population consists of children. Suffice to say, it is widely considered to be the largest measles outbreak of the decade.
New York amidst Measles Outbreak
Measles is characterized as an infectious viral disease that can result in severe health complications like pneumonia. In extreme circumstances, it might also affect the brain region. What makes the condition serious is its contagious property. Which means that it can easily spread from one person to the other.
Earlier in February, Washington became the first state this year to declare measles outbreak. The decision came about after 40 cases were registered in a span of just one week. The problem then spread to Ohio affecting an equal number of people at a similar pace. New York, now has become the most recent state to be part of the problem.
The state government aims at taking all the necessary action to prevent the problem for intensifying. It called out for a widespread vaccination program as well as a general awareness campaign. According to NYC mayor Bill de Blasio, it is the need of the hour that everyone plays his/her part in overcoming the situation. “This is something that has now become even more urgent,” Blasio stated.
A number of essential guidelines have been issued for the residents to follow on immediate notice. According to the official statement, every person living in the affected area(s) is supposed to get him/herself immunized within 48-hour time limit. Otherwise, a heavy fine up to $500 will be applicable.
21 people were hospitalized this month of April out of which five have been admitted to ICUs. On a slightly fortunate note, no deaths have been reported so far.
The “Unaware” New Yorkers?
One of the biggest problems faced by the state government is the lack of awareness among people. Simply put, most are unaware of the measles outbreak existing in the first place. They fail to realize how serious the problem can possibly be. As a result, do not indulge in taking any meaningful measures in that regard.
The unawareness also mirrors in the low vaccination rate of measles state wise. This was one major issue in Washington and New York seems to be doing no better. The current rate in NY, though better than its Washington counterpart, fails to meet the requirement to attain herd immunity. Which really means that as long as the target isn’t met, measles will continue to spread amongthe population.