Measles, which was declared eradicated in 2000, is on a horrifying upswing across the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control confirmed 704 measles cases since the start of 2019, the highest number since 1994, and the agency is urging parents to have their children vaccinated, and for those traveling abroad to make sure they are immunized.
Sadly, a 5-month girl confirmed as Alabama’s first case of the measles, was too young to receive the vaccine. And now, photos of the sick little girl are going viral.
NEW pics of the 5 month old Emma Peine, the St. Clair County baby who's the 1st confirmed case of measles in Alabama—heartbreaking to see the effects here. Pics courtesy her mom, Audrey Peine pic.twitter.com/qqZcYijxBx
— Jonathan Hardison (@FOX6Hardison) May 2, 2019
Not surprisingly, people had pretty strong reactions to the sight of the sick baby.
Most pointed out that when people don’t vaccinate, they not only leave themselves susceptible to illness, but they can harm others.
Heartbreaking. Anti-vax is child abuse. That kids too young to be vaccinated like little Emma must suffer for this anti-science crusade is just terrible.
— Victoria Brownworth (@VABVOX) May 4, 2019
So thankful my kid turned one last month and received the MMR vaccine during this insane measles outbreak. Heart goes out to this family.
— eDags (@Edags15) May 4, 2019
The baby’s mother, Audrey Peine, wrote in a now-private Facebook post that she did “everything” to protect her daughter, AL.com reports.
“I breastfed her for her entire life. I kept her up to date on her vaccinations. I took her to the doctor when she was sick. And she tested positive for something she was too young to be vaccinated for,” Peine wrote.
That’s why other people need to be vaccinated, so we can have herd immunity
— Stephen West 🔦 (@stevew1113) May 3, 2019
By not vaccinating your kids who are old enough to get vaccinated is putting those who are too young to get the vaccination at risk. Please don’t be dumb and put others at risk for something that could be 100% preventable.
— Morgan ✧ (@morgan_peabody) May 3, 2019
The MMR vaccine protects against three diseases: measles, mumps, and rubella. The CDC recommends children get two doses of MMR vaccine, starting with the first dose at 12 through 15 months of age, and the second dose at 4 through 6 years of age.
The CDC says that there are currently outbreaks of the measles in several parts of the U.S., including the Pacific Northwest, Michigan and New York City. They believe the outbreaks are due to people traveling to other countries with significant outbreaks, including Israel, the Philippines and Ukraine, and then coming back to the U.S. and infecting people in areas with low vaccination rates.
And in good news, little Emma is doing a lot better. “Her rash is starting to clear up. She’s still got a few spots on her, but it’s a lot better than it was,” Peine told WSFA News . “Her fever is gone, she’s still got a little bit of a runny nose, but overall, it’s a lot better.”
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