Thursday, August 24, 2017

Measles could triple if anti-vaxx trends continue

What was once unthinkable is now taking place.  Measles was thought to be eradicated in this country over 15 years ago.  However, human nature being what it is, we just can't stand success.  The anti-vaxxers are gaining more followers so the Journal of the American Medical Association issued some warnings about what this trend could mean for public health (The report is posted below).  It's really quite simple.  Measles cases will substantially increase if fewer Measles vaccines are given.  This is not hard to understand.  To paraphrase Algore: one goes up, the other goes down. JAMA reported:

A 5% decline in MMR vaccine coverage in the United States would result in an estimated 3-fold increase in measles cases for children aged 2 to 11 years nationally every year, with an additional $2.1 million in public sector costs. The numbers would be substantially higher if unvaccinated infants, adolescents, and adult populations were also considered.  There was variation around these estimates due to the stochastic elements of measles importation and sensitivity of some model inputs, although the trend was robust. (KF Note to anti-vaxxers: Three-fold means triple).

The report took aim at the anti-vaxxer movement:

The routine vaccination of children is declining in Texas and other areas of the United States where they allow for personal belief and other nonmedical exemptions to childhood vaccination requirements. In these areas, there is growing vaccine hesitancy—defined as a delay or refusal to accept vaccination based on personal beliefs despite availability—that could accelerate gaps in vaccine coverage across the United States. The determinants of the parental decision- making process on whether to vaccinate their child are complex and context specific, but are often influenced by misinformation, false claims regarding vaccine safety, and a low perceived risk of infectious diseases among other factors. While the sources driving vaccine hesitancy (eg, the “anti- vaxxer” movement, celebrity endorsement, and online content) have historically been outside of science and government, there have recently been calls for a special government commission on vaccine safety, despite overwhelming scientific consensus on the safety and effectiveness of vaccinations. If the panel were to draft policies that relax childhood vaccinations requirements, the already declining trends in vaccination coverage in US children may decline further. The aim of this study was to estimate the potential public health and economic consequences of declining child- hood vaccination, a result of a growing vaccine hesitancy movement, using the case example of measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccination and measles virus.
It's just measles.  What could go wrong?  Dr. Mark Seigel reminded us of a few facts in the Wall Street Journal two years ago:

Before 1963, when the measles vaccine became available for public use in the U.S., there were more than 500,000 reported measles cases every year, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data. On average, 432 cases a year resulted in death. After an effective vaccination campaign, that number dwindled to 86 measles cases by 2000, with zero fatalities....

  Measles is a highly contagious disease with an attack rate of 90%, meaning that an infected person has a 90% chance of spreading it to someone else in close contact. Compare that with the flu, which the public considers highly contagious yet has an attack rate of 25%...Earlier post.
Don't forget that measles can linger in the air for up to two hours after a victim coughs or sneezes. 

Meanwhile, the Central Mississippi Tea Party showed this movie last week its August meeting:

Keep in mind that Mississippi probably has the best vaccination law in the country and this crowd wants to wreck it.  The Mississippi State Department of Health approved all applications for medical exemptions last year.


Anonymous said...

Here's a first person account of life before many of the vaccinations we have now together with answers to common objections.

Anonymous said...

Trend continues? We are one of THREE states that have these strict laws.

Uh, if the few thousands of kids that are born in the low population state of MS each year cause the world to tilt on its axis by not getting some or all of shots, then it was in the cards for us Kingfish.

Kingfish said...

I am speaking of a national trend. That is what the JAMA referred to. But hey, lets screw up what we do right in this state. #wearemississippi

Anonymous said...

"What we do right" until it affects your child, huh? Easy to say when you are sitting at 40,000 feet I guess. And do not tell me you understand because you do not have kids, period! If you do not have kids in this equation you do not get an opinion.

For the record, I do and they have both been vaccinated. And I would do it again.

Kingfish said...

Maybe a few of your kids should die until you get the point?

I'm looking at old Clarion Ledger stories on measles right now. Nearly 100 years ago the state was reporting cases of several thousand per month. Some months only a few hundred. But ok, shamus. Can't talk about civil rights issues unless you are black. Can't talk about abortion unless you are a woman. Can't talk about military issues unless you are a vet. Can't say anything about education unless you are a teacher. Got it.

Nuff2Say said...

Kingfish... go to your Safe Space!!!

Anonymous said...

The anti-vaxxers are no different than any other radical group. They shout and create lots of noise because they do not have any science to back up their beliefs, and in fact, the science defeats their belief. So, they shout everyone down.

Anonymous said...

I support people being able to choose what they want for their children.

I also support some sort of quarantine so that their choices can't affect others. Can't have your cake and eat it too!

Anonymous said...

The excerpt from JAMA above failed to take into account the illegal immigrant population that is unlikely to have vaccinated their kids. One measles outbreak up north was tied to such a population.

Anonymous said...

I have a niece who at 15 months was perfectly healthy and normal: she was walking, doing a little talking, etc. She went in for her MMR and that VERY NIGHT got fever, kept falling down, and screaming at the top of her lungs.

Five years later, and she is completely mentally retarded. Go look in her mother's pained face and tell her she doesn't know what she has experienced. It is one of the worst things my family as gone through in three generations.

Every time a new vaccination is made mandatory by the government (with the help of their lobbyists), do you know how many billions of dollars in profits hit the big pharma bottom line?

Does anybody know the story of the Austrian Doctor who discovered bacteria? Hint: he ended up dying in a mental hospital stripped of all his medical license. He was literally persecuted to death by his colleagues in the medical profession.

Now, I know that vaccinations are net a great thing. And I'm not saying kids shouldn't be vaccinated. But what is wrong with some independent research into what effects are. Is it necessary to shoot these tiny babies up with so many vaccs in such a short amount of time? The studies that are out there claiming they are safe, are the researches independent? Or do their salaries depend on funding from big pharm?

Stay skeptical folks.

Anonymous said...

Not only anti vaxers but the illegals. Do not vaccinate their children...I read a report on how they have reported huge uptick in measles.mumps chickenpox...etc etc..

Anonymous said...

The root of this issue: No one trusts the corporate state 100 percent of the time. This "truism" manifests itself in different ways with different people, but if you expect people to completely trust the government ANYWHERE in the U.S., you won't find it.

Darryl Hamilton said...

Damn, Kingfish knows how to smoke out the knuckle draggers out there...

Anonymous said...

Stay smart, folks. Or, get smart, it may be. Until the measles vaccines, we had 500 dead a year from just that. 4,000 with encephalitis. 48,000 hospitalized. No science links between MMR and "retardation" (God, are you out of touch). Stop spreading lies.

Anonymous said...

Sad stories from those who have children who suffer blindness or death from measles, caught son after they get around other young people, perhaps in college dorm or get acquainted party, all for the lack of a simple shot that works.

Well intentioned parents putting their children at risk, coupled with that "know it all since I read it on the internet" attitude that seems to be running amok in our nation today.

God help us when Smallpox comes screaming back.

Anonymous said...

It's always struck me as odd that the Tea Party has taken hold of the Anti Vax movement, and are in essence linked with Michael Moore. He's arguably one of the BIGGEST liberal voices and yet these "conservatives" are believing everything he says, does, and publishes.

Anonymous said...

People who do not want to vaccinate their children have the same right as those who do vaccinate their children. If you do vaccinate your children they are, or should be, protected from catching the disease.
Right now the U.S. has millions of illegals in our country who are not vaccinated. Many in our country want to bring in more and let those already here stay.
Something is very wrong when we allow illegals to break our laws then complain about citizens who are not breaking any laws.

When the U.S. makes sure the illegals are vaccinated then they can complain about the citizens who choose not to vaccinate their children.

Anonymous said...

Go to any tea party meeting in the state. It used to be about taxes and conservatism, now the anti-vaxers have completely taken over the meetings. The web pages are so covered up with this stuff its like we need a new tea party to talk about team party stuff.

Anonymous said...

I have kids. The anti-vaccine people are a bunch of bat shit crazy folks playing scientists on their home computer tapping into an evidentiary basis that amounts to a bunch of flaky blog articles referencing one another. These people come from the slow class at school.

Anonymous said...

Go to any tea party meeting in the state. It used to be about taxes and conservatism, now the anti-vaxers have completely taken over the meetings.

Which specific meeting did you attend?

The web pages are so covered up with this stuff its like we need a new tea party to talk about team party stuff.


Anonymous said...

4:42 - you appropriately describe the anti-vax crazies.

2:54 - you correctly state the new 'bat-shit' that comes out of the current 'tea partiers'. (of course, you left out the flag, and of course the McD'ites, but they are all one and the same.)

The Tea Party started out as a reasonable movement, with reasonable people upset over the taxes and spending of the federal government.

Now - they are a bunch (small bunch, but loud) of crazies that want to bitch about anything that they can connect to the government, any government. Except, of course, the government that they would produce if they could just get put in charge.

What makes it even more interesting is that along with Michael Moore, these tea partiers are fighting against something who's partners in crime are the illegal immigrants that the baggers are so worried about.

Anonymous said...

Everyone is freaking out over Nazis and Hugh Freeze, but there is likely no entity that is more dangerous than the anti-vaxx movement. Sorry, you do not have a right to spread disease.

Anonymous said...

Gardasil troubles me.

HPV causes bad stuff. I understand.

But Gardasil still troubles me.

Anonymous said...

How many of these anti-vaxers actually have had the measles? How many have had the mumps, especially as an adult? I had the measles as a child. I was lucky, no serious lasting effects, but I wouldn't wish that experience on anyone. There is a much higher risk of serious permanent damage or death from the measles than from the vaccine. Quarantines are ineffective because infection can spread before the parent realizes the child is infected. Or many parents are irresponsible enough not to actually quarantine.

Sorry bit anti-vaxing is just dumb. There is no other way to describe it.

Anonymous said...

@9:15- I agree on the Gardasil. I am not an anti-vaxxer, but I have personal experience with a vaccine injury related to Gardasil that wasn't reported because it didn't fall within the very narrow constraints needed to be reportable. The risk reward is just not there for me.

My children are vaccinated but I do question an ever increasing vaccine load on tiny bodies. There are huge incentives to big Pharma for more vaccines. And, I question the long term efficacy. My child has already had to have a chicken pox booster because the year she received it was found to not be effective. I honestly wish I had just exposed her to it so I would know she had enough natural immunity.

loess learner said...

This post and many of the responses illustrate the same simple-minded, black-or-white thinking that is killing our country over race issues. Nazi bad, therefore Antifa good! Infectious disease bad, therefore all vaccine good! An intelligent and reasonable person, with any iota of discernment about the ability (and well-documented history) of government and large corporations to occasionally fleece us, can understand that vaccines, while a huge net benefit to the human species, come with some risks and collateral damage.
Fish, your condescending attitude (from someone with no skin in the game!) just adds to the problem. How many of your non-existent children have to suffer life-altering effects from vaccines? The problem is not vaccinate/not vaccinate (black-or-white thinking), it is a matter of which vaccines at what time and how many can be given at a time without raising the risks of adverse effects. You actually want to blindly follow the recommendations/requirements put out by the big gov/big pharma team? How many billions do you think are made from every additional required round of shots? But hey, they saved the world, we should give 'em everything they ask for!
Mike Madison has been doing a great job on his show (103.9) of talking about this issue. Gardasil, in particular. No proven benefit, lots of proven damage and deaths, and billions in profit. And they want to expand it to a mandatory shot for all kids.

Anonymous said...

Booster shots are normal for some regimes. Good grief. And, if you made her have chicken pox, are you ready for shingles? Yep, even at a young age. While it usually kicks in after 60, we had one who was exposed to chicken pox before the vaccines were in widespread use. He therefore later had shingles, horribly painful, at age 12. You can have it again, at any time. You read of the Aussie women whose daughter died at 12 after measles complications? Again, exposed due to NOT being able to get the shots in. Not Mom's fault. But to read of this child slowly dying, blind first, from encephalitis is the flip side of the inane "debate" about deliberately flipping a coin on childhood disease. Finally, it's HERD immunity in most cases. Jerks who don't vaccinate their kids risk OTHER's lives as well. You can be a moron and say I'll flip a coin with your kid's life, but don't do it to mine on immune suppressants. Or, the grandparents with lower immune response. Or the cancer patients. Or the 1/10000 that it just simply kills, blinds, damages brains, or paralyzes, cuz "it's not so bad" that childhood or adult preventable disease.

Anonymous said...

Good question, 10:20 - how many of these anti-vaxers have ever had measles, mumps or chickenpox? Probably very few since their parents had enough sense to get them vaccinated.

At the age of 7 (late 1950's) I had measles. Very sick. Still remember room spinning from high fever. Ended up in hospital. Missed two weeks of school (really only one week since the school closed for one week because so many children were out sick).

Also had mumps at young age. Remember feeling horrible. Pretty much isolated in my bedroom for over a week. Mumps can cause sterility in males, meningitis and hearing loss.

Chickenpox. Had chickenpox as an adult.....IT.WAS.HELL. So sick. Missed two weeks of work but it took me another couple of weeks to actually get my full strength back. Still have scars.

Not getting your child vaccinated is comparable to keeping a loaded gun lying around your house or not restraining your child in a car seat or keeping toxic substances within a child's reach.

Not getting your child vaccinated is child neglect/endangerment - IMHO

Anonymous said...

If you vaccinate your child why are you worrying about the disease the shot is supposed to stop? If the shot actually works your child is protected. You have no worry. Why should other parents be forced to believe and do as you do?

Kingfish said...

Tell that to a pregnant woman or a mother with an infant.

Anonymous said...

9:34, you really don't understand how vaccines work do you? They do not necessarily give 100% immunity. But when virtually everyone has been vaccinated, then there is a virtually elimination of the disease, of not entire elimination. If a portion of the population remains unvaccinated, there is still some risk to the vaccinated, but not as much as to the unvaccinated. Moreover, those of who are vaccinated end up subsidizing the unvaccinated through increased heath insurance premiums because they will have a higher likliehood of needing medical care, driving up healthcare costs. As pointed out elsewhere, there are folks who for genuine medical reasons cannot be vaccinated, so the unvaccinated present a large risk to those, not to mention the risk to fetuses.

Anonymous said...

Funny how parents who are so fired up about other parents who choose not to get their kids vaccinated are the same parents who will try to bribe every law enforcement and judge that has anything to do with their child getting caught with drugs.
Drugs kill more kids than measles. How about putting the kids in jail that use, buy, or sell drugs?

Anonymous said...

11:47--How in the world did you come up with that inane correlation???

Anonymous said...

1:12 pm I'm sorry about your niece, but her story has no scientific relevance. It's what is called " anecdotal".

There are rather a large number of more likely causes for her fever and it would have to reached 107 to have resulted in brain damage. She wouldn't have suddenly gone from normal to 107 whatever the cause. It is common for children to run a slight fever with any immunization, even the ones from decades ago, so preventive actions can be taken like giving baby aspirin and sponge baths with tepid water. Or if you have a child with a predisposition to allergies ( allergic shiners under the eyes is one hint) , Benadryl can be useful. Consult your pediatrician.

That she seemed to be developing normally at 15 months is not definitive either. Retardation can be suspected or diagnosed that early or earlier but even had there be delayed development, it wouldn't be definitive for the future. Not all humans developed at the " average" rate. Future geniuses don't necessary walk or talk early or " on time" and those who are developing early don't always keep developing at a " normal" rate.

I agree with you that pharma is out of control but there has been good, unbiased research on vaccinations.

There are always risks for any medication. No drug is 100% safe for everyone.

Anonymous said...

How about you people raise your kids and I will raise my kids? In Mississippi the government is raising the majority of kids. Less than half of the population can pay their own bills. I pay my own bills and raise my own kids. I will make the decisions for them until they get old enough to make their own decisions.
When I see another person's name on the checks going toward raising my children they can make the decisions. Until then I will be making the decisions.

Anonymous said...

It's simple: You don't have a right to endanger others by refusing to vaccinate your children. You can put up billboards and scream on the internet until eternity, but that just doesn't make it so.

Anonymous said...

Do you think you have a right to endanger both your own children and other people's children? If your approach was followed millions would still be dying from smallpox. Polio would still be a widespread killer and still be maiming thousands and thousands of innocent and helpless children, as well as adults. Sounds like good sense to me. Not.

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