The Washington state governor Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency in January in response to the state's own measles outbreak, while the federal agency the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said other outbreaks - defined as three or more cases - have occurred in Texas, Illinois, California and New York City in 2019.
Rockland County Executive Ed Day plans Tuesday afternoon to declare a countywide state of emergency, which will begin at midnight and remain in place for 30 days or until unvaccinated minors receive the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, according to a news release.
Rockland County Executive Ed Day said at a news conference that the state of emergency taking effect Tuesday night is meant to persuade parents to have their children vaccinated to reverse the trajectory of the disease's spread.
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"We owe this to the residents of this great county so we never ever have to go through this again".
Day says parents will be held accountable if they are found to be in violation of the state of emergency.
Earlier this month, a judge denied a request for 44 unvaccinated children in Rockland County to return to school after their parents sued the county's health department over a policy enacted in December. Once a child is inoculated, they are no longer subject to the ban.
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The disease started in the area when seven unvaccinated travelers diagnosed with measles entered the county last October, and has spread to 153 cases to date, Day said. The county reported almost 50 of those cases in 2019.
As of Mar 21, there are 151 confirmed reported cases of measles in the county. In 2014, 667 cases were confirmed nationwide and there were 372 cases in 2018.
Although the USA eliminated measles in 2000, there's been a recent spike in cases nationwide.
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