Monday, April 29, 2019

Measles Misinformation Gets an Immigration Twist


The outbreak of measles in the U.S. and around the world is due largely to inadequate vaccination rates in some communities, not illegal immigration, as one popular meme on Facebook claims.
The meme shows a picture of a baby who appears to be infected with measles and says: “Thanks to a highly effective vaccination program the Measles virus was eliminated from the U.S. in 2000. Thanks to the immigrants who illegally cross the U.S. Mexican border, and the Democrats who refuse to stop them, the Measles virus has been declared a public health emergency in 2019.”
The first part of that claim is correct. Measles was eliminated in the United States in 2000 and it was eliminated across both North and South America in 2016.
Elimination means cases can still occur, but the disease isn’t being continuously spread for a year or more in a specific area.
The second part of the claim, however, is incorrect.
The virus has been brought into the U.S. by people who have traveled to places where there is an outbreak or where the disease is still common, such as parts of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. From those travelers, the disease can then spread in U.S. communities that have unvaccinated people, according to the CDC.
For example, the New York City health department declared a public health emergency on April 9. That measles outbreak, which started in 2018 and spread in the Orthodox Jewish community, was brought on by travelers who had been in Israel, where a large outbreak is occurring, according to the Pan American Health Organization.


  1. "More than two million Israelis are either unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated for the measles, according to a Channel 13 report."

    Axios News: "The outbreaks were imported into the U.S. by travelers from regions where outbreaks were occurring, such as Ukraine and Israel, and spread in communities with inadequate levels of vaccination." -Axios.

  2. partially vaccinated means they were vaccinated when they were young. The unvaccinated could be the anti-vaxxers, the Arabs and certain extremists in the hareidi camp.


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