Minnesota measles outbreak raises concerns

Glen Mclaughlin
May 13, 2017

They've also been countering misinformation about a debunked link between the MMR vaccine and autism.

WorldNetDaily today responded to reports that the Somali-American population in Minnesota has witnessed an outbreak of measles after anti-vaccine activists warned community members, which once had a higher vaccination rate than the state's population at large, that vaccines are connected to autism.

"I think it's important to keep in mind that the 50 cases represent just the tip of the iceberg, they don't represent the hundreds of cases that our staff have investigated and ruled out", Kris Ehresmann with the Minnesota Department of Health said Wednesday.

In 2008, the Minnesota Department of Health found that Somali children in Minneapolis were more likely to take part in services for autistic children, although it was unclear if that was because more children in the community had the disorder or because there was better outreach to the community.

The site also referred to Dr. Andrew Bostom who said: "The case against vaccinations is first an Islamic one". He added that could have permanent brain damage or have blindness or deafness.

In 2014, nearly 90 percent of 2-year-old Minnesota children were vaccinated against measles.

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"Twenty-nine percent of the 593 foreign-born cases of active TB diagnosed in Minnesota, or 161, were attributed to Somali born migrants".

Ikram Mohamed is a Somali-American mother of five children.

The measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine is given to children in two doses, typically the first dose is given to children 12 months old, with a second dose when they are between four to six years old. Mohamed doesn't plan to vaccinate her 5-year-old until he starts school in the fall. If you are unsure of your status, you can check your immunization record at: https://www.dhfswir.org/PR/clientSearch.do?language=en or call the Lincoln County Health Department at 715-536-0307 for a record check or for more information regarding vaccine preventable diseases. "And that's a very hard choice", Mohamed said.

TwinCities.com notes that the autism-vaccine movement actually began back in 1998 when United Kingdom surgeon Dr. Andrew Wakefield published false data in the Lancet medical journal, which later retracted Wakefield's study.

That last group "is undecided and confused" Ururshe said, explaining that some parents waffle between accepting the vaccine and fearing it.

This measles outbreak was stretching the funds of the Minnesota Department of Health and it needed $5 million to combat infectious diseases. Two people had received both recommended doses.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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