The newest United States public health problems is plaguing a community in Minnesota. There has been an outbreak of measles in what is the largest group of Somalis in the country.
These refugees are bring a lot of diseases along with them. There has been a spike in tuberculosis in Minnesota as well, with 81% of the cases being foreign-born, and more than half of the incidents occurred in refugees.
The Somali refugees are being urged to get vaccinated for measles along with their kids. The majority of those who have contracted the measles are 5 years old or younger. There has been some disinformation being spread by anti-vaccination groups and that has discouraged these migrants from getting their appropriate MMR shots.
The outbreak was discovered across several day care centers. There is currently an ongoing investigation to identify anyone who may have been exposed to the virus.
New babies are at particular risk to this as they have yet to be vaccinated until 12 months of age. It takes up to 3 weeks to show symptoms of measles.
It is important to the health of everyone around them that people keep up to date on their vaccinations. Children across day care centers in Minnesota are now at risk unless they have been inoculated.
“According to a health department official, Minnesota’s Somali immigrant community has been a particular target of the anti-vaccination movement, colloquially known as ‘anti-vaxxers,’ ” Mic.com reported last week: “They’re very much engaged with and targeting this community,” Kris Ehresmann, infectious disease division director at the Minnesota Health Department, said in a phone call Wednesday.
According to Ehresmann, anti-vaccine groups began to target the Somali community around 2008, amid concerns about autism among Somali-American children. Anti-vaccine groups started reaching out to the Somali community and showing up at community health meetings, she said, disseminating misinformation linking autism to the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, or MMR. Since then, the population has seen a “steady decline in MMR vaccine rates.” “At least one high-profile figure in the anti-vaccine movement has made special trips just to speak to Somali immigrants. In 2011, Andrew Wakefield, a man who has been called the “father of the anti-vaccine movement,” showed up in Minnesota in the midst of what was then the state’s first major measles outbreak in years, the Star Tribune reported at the time,” Mic.com added.