California confirms 107 measles cases, 39 from Disneyland outbreak
The outbreak has renewed a debate over the so-called anti-vaccination movement, in which fears about potential side effects of vaccines have led a small minority of parents to refuse to allow their children to be inoculated.
Los Angeles — A total of 107 cases of measles have been confirmed in California, more than a third of them linked to an outbreak that began in Disneyland in late December, state health officials said on Monday.
More than three dozen additional cases of the highly infectious disease have been reported in 19 other states and in Mexico, including three new cases diagnosed in Cook County, Illinois. Seven of the eight cases so far found in Cook County are associated with a daycare center in the city of Palatine.
The Georgia case is unrelated to a California outbreak that health officials believe began with a person from outside the United States who visited the Disneyland theme park in Anaheim in late December.
Georgia health officials are working with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to identify anyone who may have been exposed to measles from the infant, the Georgia Department of Public Health said.
According to the California Department of Public Health, 39 of the state's 107 confirmed cases have been linked to the Disneyland cluster.
The measles outbreak has renewed a debate over the so-called anti-vaccination movement in which fears about potential side effects of vaccines, fueled by now-debunked research suggesting a link to autism, have led a small minority of parents to refuse to allow their children to be inoculated.
Some parents also opt not to have their children vaccinated for religious or other reasons.
Measles was declared eliminated in the United States in 2000 after decades of intensive childhood vaccine efforts. But last year, the country had its highest number of measles cases in two decades.