NEW YORK (CNN) – New information now on the recent measles outbreak traced back to Disneyland. Infections are spreading with more than 55 cases of measles in seven states and Mexico.
The CDC says there were more than 600 cases of measles reported last year, a record high. It’s skyrocketed because there are parents who refuse to vaccinate their children.
Call it the Jenny effect: “Without a doubt in my mind, I believe vaccinations, vaccinations triggered Evan’s autism,” said Jenny McCarthy.
Almost a decade ago, actress Jenny McCarthy became the spokeswoman for the anti-vaccination movement, a movement that’s only grown stronger. Finding support among liberal, well-educated communities despite since science showing over and over there’s no link between autism and vaccines.
In California, for example, a study out this week shows low rates of vaccination in San Francisco and Marin County both wealthy areas. In southern California, affluent areas in Los Angeles have had immunization rates that rival South Sudan’s.
“When parents choose to not vaccinate, you may get similar parents around them. So what you get are pockets, groups of people who think the same. And so now you have a cluster of children who are susceptible, playing together and going to school and houses of worship and the like, so if that bad germ gets into the group, then woosh, all of the sudden you’ll have an epidemic,” said Dr. William Shaffner, infectious disease expert.
So why don’t parents believe the scientists? Some of them are convinced the government is working with the pharmaceutical industry and just wants to sell vaccines.
The supposed link between autism and vaccines was championed by British scientist Andrew Wakefield.
However, his paper was discredited and redacted from the British Medical Journal in 2011.
“The study is not a lie. The findings that we made have been replicated in five countries around the world,” Andrew Wakefield.
“Sir, that’s not true. You have, you have been offered the chance to replicate your study, and you have never taken — taken anybody up on that. You have had plenty of opportunity to replicate your study,” said Anderson Cooper.
“Just accused me of giving you a falsehood. I’m telling you that this work has been replicated in five countries around the world,” said Wakefield.
That was not true but even so many parents still believe Wakefield was right. Still believe the government is lying to Americans and still refuse to vaccinate their children no matter what.