Recent News

Worldwide Measles Spotlight: March 19, 2019

Mar 19 2019

​According to various governments and news reports, the worldwide measles outbreak continues to expand during 2019. As of March 19, 2019, the 3 leading measles hot-spots around the world are as follows: Ukraine: 11 people have died and more than 30,500 have been infected during 2019. Philippines: 315 people have died, and a total of 21,396 measles cases were reported from January to March 14, 2019. Brazil: 12 people have died and a total of 10,334 confirmed measles cases have been reported during 2019.

Source: Precision Vaccinations Precision Vaccinations

Measles Outbreak Continues in Oregon and Washington, With One New Case Reported Daily

Mar 19 2019

An outbreak of measles that began in January in southern Washington state has risen to 79 cases throughout Washington and Oregon, according to the Oregonian. In late January, health officials in Washington’s Clark County, which sits north of Portland, Ore., reported that 22 people had been infected with measles in the city of Vancouver, Wash., with most of the cases involving children under 10. Since then, the total of measles infections has risen to 79 cases as of Monday, with 73 of them in Vancouver or Clark County. The latest case reported involved an adult in their 30s. The rate of reported infections in the region continue to be around one a day. Exposure areas listed by Clark County and the Oregonian include hospitals and health clinics, Portland International Airport, and a trampoline park as well as a Red Robin restaurant in Salem, Ore.

Source: Fortune Fortune

Same Doctor Wrote One-Third of Vaccine Exemptions for SDUSD Students: Report

Mar 18 2019

​Mainstream medicine says there's no question that childhood vaccines save lives and prevent outbreaks of serious disease. But despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, skeptics still insist vaccines are dangerous and can actually cause autism and other illnesses. Those parents can in some cases get a medical exemption from vaccinations required to attend school in California. NBC 7’s media partner, the Voice of San Diego (VOSD), found that the San Diego Unified School District has approved 486 medical exemptions to the vaccine requirement, since 2015. Public records obtained from the SDUSD by VOSD, reveal that Dr. Tara Zandvliet has written nearly one-third of those exemptions. According to Zandvliet’s website, children will be considered for an exemption if four relatives in their extended family have one of several autoimmune conditions.

Source: NBC San Diego NBC San Diego

CDC Flu Update: Illness Driven by a Wave of H3N2 Virus Activity

Mar 18 2019

According to this week’s FluView report, overall influenza activity decreased slightly but remains high, driven by a wave of H3N2 virus activity. While this week saw small declines in levels of influenza-like-illness (ILI) and the proportion of clinical laboratory specimens testing positive for flu, 46 states and Puerto Rico continue to report widespread flu activity and 30 states are still experiencing high ILI activity. Influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses remain predominant for the flu season nationally, however, during the week ending March 9, influenza A(H3) viruses were reported more frequently that H1N1pdm09 viruses for the second week in a row. Also, another four flu-related pediatric deaths occurring during the 2018-2019 season were reported by CDC, bringing the total to 68 flu-related pediatric deaths this season. CDC expects flu activity to remain elevated for a number of weeks. While CDC continues to recommend influenza vaccination as long as influenza viruses are circulating, influenza antiviral drugs are an important second line of defense that can be used to treat flu illness. H3N2 viruses are typically associated with more severe illness in older adults, and flu vaccine may protect less well against H3N2 illness in older adults, making prompt treatment with flu antivirals in this age group especially important during the current period of H3N2 predominance.

Source: Infection Control Today Infection Control Today

Spring is near, but flu season is far from over

Mar 18 2019

The arrival of spring will soon bring warmer temperatures and blossoming flowers, but it does not mark the end of flu season. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), flu season typically begins in late fall and does not end until April or May. In 2018 alone, approximately 49 million individuals contracted influenza in the United States, including millions of children. Even as outdoor activities increase, parents must remember that the flu continues to spread, placing their children at risk. Taking preventative steps to mitigate sickness protects children and adults. By remaining mindful of daily health habits, the likelihood of flu exposure decreases. There are several ways to protect your child from getting the flu:

Source: Philladelphia Inquirer Philladelphia Inquirer

In Texas, Three More Measles Cases and Four New Anti-Vaccine Bills

Mar 18 2019

Since early March, Texas has confirmed three new measles cases amid an ongoing outbreak, and added several new anti-vaccine measures to the roster of bills filed this session. Texas has seen 11 cases of the disease so far this year, already surpassing the state total for any year since 2013. Across the country, there have been at least 228 cases in 12 states. The World Health Organization recently identified “vaccine hesitancy” as a growing international threat that “threatens to reverse progress made in tackling vaccine-preventable diseases.” Yet in the last two weeks, Texas lawmakers have proposed four measures that experts say spread misinformation and stoke fear about the safety and efficacy of vaccines. “Overall, I am shocked at what is happening,” said Rekha Lakshmanan, director of advocacy and public policy at the Houston-based Immunization Partnership, who called the legislation a “scare tactic.” “It’s extremely irresponsible. In essence, those bills will weaken public health security, as I see it, by creating an environment where potentially more outbreaks can happen.”

Source: Texas Observer Texas Observer

Study reports low rates of HPV vaccine administration in the US

Mar 17 2019

​Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a sexually transmitted viral infection. There are over 100 varieties of HPV and it is considered to be the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI). HPV is contracted via sexual contact; however, it can also be contracted via skin-to-skin contact. Sexual intercourse is not required to contract HPV. HPV can go away on its own, but if it does linger in the body, it can cause a variety of health concerns. These health concerns include cervical cancer and other cancers, genital warts and warts on other areas of the body. In a study published by The Journal of Infectious Diseases, researchers state that the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices encourages an introduction to the HPV vaccine at 11 or 12 years of age. This is so that the adolescent can be fully vaccinated by age 13. If an adolescent receives the vaccination before their 15th birthday, only two doses are required. If they receive the HPV vaccine after the age of 15, three doses are required for full immunization. In 2016, only 43% of American adolescents were completely vaccinated against HPV. Statistics from The National Survey of Family Growth suggest that by age 15, over 10% of females and over 15% of males experience sexual introduction.

Source: Medical News Bulletin Medical News Bulletin

388 Measles Cases Reported in Just Three States During 2019

Mar 17 2019

​According to various state governments and news publishers, the measles outbreaks during 2019 continue to expand throughout the USA. The majority of the measles cases reported during 2019 are segmented into 2 categories, which are under-vaccinated individuals or related to international travel. Countries such as Israel, the Philippines, and Ukraine continue to report significant measles outbreaks, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In response to this worldwide measles epidemic, the CDC reissued 17 Travel Alerts, on March 11, 2019. The measles virus can easily spread when it reaches a community in the U.S. where groups of people are unvaccinated.

Source: Precision Vaccinations Precision Vaccinations

Opinion: America urgently needs a national vaccine initiative

Mar 15 2019

Vaccinations in the United States have saved millions of lives, increased life expectancy and saved trillions of dollars in societal costs. The science is clear –vaccines are safe, effective and the best protection we have against serious preventable diseases like measles. Vaccine programs are one of public health’s greatest accomplishments, yet we are rapidly losing ground. While most people choose to vaccinate, health officials and health care providers face significant challenges communicating with those who are uncertain about vaccines because of misinformation, distrust and fear. And because of our success with immunizations in the U.S., today’s parents may not understand how devastating these diseases can be and how serious a threat they pose. We urgently need federal resources and leadership for a national vaccine initiative spearheaded by CDC in partnership with states to counter anti-vaccine messages and halt the backsliding. State, territorial, tribal and local public health agencies are on the front lines doing critical work with severely limited resources. I strongly urge Congress to provide sustained, predictable and increased funding for a strong public health system and a national vaccine initiative.

Source: FOX News FOX News

How the anti-vaccine movement targets cities – and creates disease ‘hotspots’

Mar 14 2019

Just a 30-minute drive from Portland, Oregon, is Washington’s Clark County, home to one of the largest outbreaks of measles in the US. Of the 70 or so confirmed cases, the majority are unvaccinated children under the age of 10. In a country that had previously eliminated measles, in 2000, hundreds of children are being kept out of school to avoid exposure to the disease. It is so contagious that if one child is diagnosed, all are considered at risk. The outbreak, declared a public health emergency earlier this year, began when an infected person from another country visited the area. All it took was for this “patient zero” to come into contact with children who hadn’t been inoculated. Then, as these children visited healthcare facilities, schools, churches and a furniture shop, the disease began to spread.

Source: The Guardian The Guardian