(NBC News) – This morning a panel of lawmakers will ask the nation’s top health experts why measles is spreading so fast — and what we can do to stop it.
The CDC tells us what started in Disneyland has now spread to Washington D.C. and 17 states – including here on the East Coast.
The CDC is now tracking 121 cases of measles across the U.S. Most, but not all of them, are connected to Disneyland.
Measles is now in the northeast: New Jersey, Delaware – and the Nation’s Capital. “Measles is literally a plane ride away,” says Dr. Anne Schuchat, the Director of the National Center for Immunization & Respiratory Diseases Director.
That’s Dr. Anne Schuchat from the CDC. She testifies today… Along with a pediatrician whose letter went viral. His kids were exposed at Disney but cannot be vaccinated.
A new pew research poll finds 83 percent of Americans feel the vaccine is safe. Lawmakers are pushing the shots. “There’s no reason not to,” said Rep. Diana DeGette, (D) Colorado.
But even with measles spreading, there’s opposition to the government requiring immunizations. “What it gets down to is a vaccine just like anything else in medicine is a procedure. It’s a personal decision,” said Dr. Kavita Patel from Johns Hopkins Medicine.
An outbreak at a Chicago-area daycare is driving people there who were vaccinated long ago to be tested to see if they’re still protected. “Just walk in, get the single blood drawn, and that’s it,” said Rasheed Ahmed, Lab Director.
Reassurance against a virus that’s growing.