NY orders measles vaccinations in Brooklyn amid outbreak, mayor says

New York City threatens to close yeshivas over unvaccinated children

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the unusual order amid what he said was a measles crisis in Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighbourhood, where more than 250 people have contracted the disease since September.

The city's largest measles outbreak since 1991 has mainly been confined to the Orthodox Jewish community in the borough of Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighbourhood, with 285 cases confirmed since October, de Blasio said at a news conference on Tuesday.

In March. a county in NY state declared a state of emergency following a measles outbreak. Most of the children were unvaccinated or partially vaccinated. "They have been spreading risky misinformation based on fake science", Dr. Barbot said in the statement. All but 39 of the confirmed cases are in children.

A virus causes measles, which is highly contagious and spreads through coughing and sneezing, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

People who resist could be fined $1,000.

The United States measles vaccination program began in 1963.

The health commissioner issued a mandate that yeshivas must keep unvaccinated children out of school.

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In an April 9 interview on WAMC with Alan Chartok, chief executive office of the Northeast Public Radio station, New York Governor Andrew Cumo said he thought the debate over parental rights to not vaccine their children against the right of the public to be protected would end up in the courts.

On Monday, the city's health department also issued an order requiring all Orthodox Jewish schools in the area to exclude unvaccinated children until the outbreak is over.

NY has contended with measles outbreaks and the legal challenges that have arisen in efforts to contain them. Officials there banned children not vaccinated against measles from public spaces last month. A state judge overturned that decision 10 days later.

Federal officials are also tracking outbreaks in New Jersey, California, Michigan and Washington state.

"It's crucial for people to understand the measles vaccine works", de Blasio continued.

"I know that parents may be afraid of getting their child vaccinated, but as a pediatrician, I know that getting vaccinated is far safer than getting measles", said NYC Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot. "Two doses of MMR vaccine are about 97% effective at preventing measles; one dose is about 93% effective".

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