January 21, 2015 by JImbo
As I showed in the above title, “Measly” means both “Has Measles” and “a tiny, inconsiderate amount.” It seems that historically the lexicon evolved to regard it as a “minor” epidemic, like the cold or flu.
Why the huge headlines?
Is it a major deal?
Well it is called the “most contagious virus known to man” according to some doctors.
I believe I’ve heard they say it’s 90% infectious given the right conditions. That’s a helluva lot higher than Ebola.
Granted, it’s not NEARLY as deadly. Measles is rarely fatal except in rare conditions (elderly, compromised immune systems, infants, etc)
The fatality rate is about .3%, or 3 people in 1,000 who get it, including the elderly, etc.
So, it CAN be fatal, but then again so can the flu. Like the flu, it is over 90% in “vulnerable” populations.
So should we be freaked out about it?
Let’s be honest. You can’t stop it coming in. Not as long as we have open borders and plenty of folks (illegal and legal) coming into the country aren’t vaccinated.
Unless you want to demand that every VISITOR to the United States has to have EVERY vaccine every US citizen gets? That doesn’t sound very “free” to me.
So, we know it’s coming in.
They say the measles vaccine is 95% effective against it. So, even with the vaccine you still have a 5% chance of getting it.
So, at worst a non-immunized is 20 times as likely to spread it… among other non-immunized kids. It’s still only 5% chance to those immunized.
So, say you have a non-immunized kid in a crowd of immunized kids.
They have a 5% chance of a 90% chance of having a .3% chance of dying from it.
That’s 1 in 10,000 cases…even less for healthy people without preexisting conditions.
It will die out pretty quick as soon as it reaches a “ring” of immunized individuals.
It would take substantial numbers of non-immunized individuals to keep it spreading.
That is what is known as “herd immunity” in people.
It’s like a forest fire. Often teams are sent in to chop all the trees down around a fire. Without any more trees it can reach, the fire then dies. Same idea with measles.
According to UNICEF and other international doctors groups, a 90% rate is acceptable to achieve “herd immunity.” So, if we can keep the number of people non-immunized below that level we should be fine. Let it get much lower than that and measles begins to become a pandemic.
Granted, it’s not as deadly as SOME are, but it could be an issue. Studies between pre- and post-immunization areas of the world show that the rates of measles outbreaks would be about 5 times as high as they are. Again, it won’t bring down our country but it would be quite a few people.
Where do we draw the line?
Do we need to mandate vaccines for kids going to school?
If we are mandating them for our kids, why not visitors to this country? Why should they get to ride the free “herd immunity” of the rest of us and not have to have the vaccines?
Or is there just a cost for freedom? Should we just let those up to 10% of people not get their kids vaccinated if they don’t want to? That’s the “cost of liberty” after all. Letting people make their own choices.