Thursday, February 26, 2015

Did You Know This About Measles"

I quote from the Washington Post article that is the source of the graph:
Measles killed 82,100 children under age 5 in 2013, ranking the disease at No. 7 on the list of the top causes of child death, according to recent statistics from the Global Burden of Disease study published in the Lancet. Lower respiratory infections like pneumonia were the number one killer, followed by malaria, diarrhea, nutritional deficiencies, congenital defects and meningitis. More small children died from measles in 2013 than died from drowning, road injuries or aids.
I suppose the good news is that diarrhea is less lethal than it once was.

More than 80,000 little kids dying of measles in 2013 is an indicator that people carrying the disease are still going to be coming to the USA frequently. It is important that we keep up the immunizations to a very high level to maintain herd immunity. That way, even if a foreign visitor with measles arrives or a U.S. traveler with a compromised immune system returns to this country with measles, the disease won't spread. Incidentally, parents protecting their children with the MMR vaccine have the benefit that their child will not suffer from measles -- a potentially fatal disease. Moreover, the kid won't get mumps nor German measles.

By the way the huge death toll in developing countries from pneumonias, malaria, diarrheal disease, malnutrition and other causes is an ugly testimony to how little we care about others.

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