Measles hits highest level in nearly 25 years, state public awareness campaign begins

Apr 23, 2019

Members of the New York State Senate are joining the fight to encourage people to get vaccinated amid an ongoing measles outbreak, as numbers approach levels not seen in 25 years.

Lawmakers in the Democrat-led chamber launched a public awareness campaign on Monday designed to give people accurate information about inoculations and how to get them while dispelling myths that they are unsafe.

Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, a Yonkers Democrat, said the campaign is a useful reminder that vaccines save lives.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, also on Monday, said 71 more cases were reported last week, with 68 of them from New York State. That brings this year's total to 626.

That is already the most since 2014, when 667 were reported for the whole year. The most before that was 963 cases in 1994.

The vast majority of measles cases have been in New York State, mainly in New York City and in nearby Rockland County (199 cases) where there is a large population of unvaccinated people in Orthodox Jewish communities.

The CDC said the other danger is from the increase in travelers who get measles abroad and bring it into the United States.

Credit Centers for Disease Control and Prevention