Measles is a highly contagious viral disease. It is widespread in many parts of the world, including Europe, Africa, and Asia. Measles begins with a fever that lasts for a couple of days, followed by a cough, runny nose, conjunctivitis (pink eye), and a rash. The rash typically appears first on the face, along the hairline, and behind the ears and then affects the rest of the body. Infected people are usually contagious from about 4 days before their rash starts to 4 days afterwards. Children routinely get their first dose of the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine at 12 months old or later. The second dose of MMR is usually administered before the child begins kindergarten but may be given one month or more after the first dose. For anyone planning to travel internationally, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) strongly encourages all Californians to make sure they are protected against measles and other dangerous diseases before they go abroad.
In December 2014, a large outbreak of measles started in California when at least 40 people who visited or worked at Disneyland theme park in Orange County contracted measles; the outbreak also spread to at least half a dozen other states. On April 17, 2015, the outbreak was declared over, since at least two 21-day incubation periods (42 days) have elapsed from the end of the infectious period of the last known outbreak-related measles case.
Pneumonia is one of several serious common complications of measles and the most common cause of death from the virus, said William Schaffner, a professor at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville. Measles kills one or two children out of every 1,000 infected, according to the CDC. At least one person was reported dead from this disease in July 2015.
At the end of June 2015 California passed a law requiring all children be vaccinated before they will be admitted to public schools. Three days after Gov. Jerry Brown signed one of the nation’s strictest mandatory vaccination bills, several hundred opponents rallied in Santa Monica on Friday and vowed to repeal it. Opponents of California’s tough new vaccine law filed petitions this past Monday seeking to put a referendum on the issue on the November 2016 ballot, but it may be a month before elections officials determine whether the ballot measure qualifies.
People have called California’s governor a fascist and other names for signing the law. The mystery is why would you not want to protect your children?