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Measles outbreak fuels debate on refusal of vaccinations



Portland – The measles outbreak that prompted a health emergency in Washington state is spreading. At least 36 cases have been confirmed in Clark County across from Portland, Oregon and health officials said it has now spread to Hawaii. Most of the patients are children who have not been vaccinated.

Abigail Eckhart is one parent who is refusing to vaccinate her youngest son because she said her middle child suffered severe reactions.

"If I could go back, I wouldn't have vaccinated any of my kids," Eckhart said.

She blames the shots, even though the U.S. The vaccine is safe at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"I think that are not really doing the studies like they should," Eckhart said.

Growing measles outbreak in Washington spreading fear

The measles virus is spread through the air and lingers for hours . If one sick child is in a room and leaves, another unvaccinated person has a 90 percent chance of catching the illness. Parents with infected children are told to avoid public places, even doctor's offices and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has declared a state of emergency.

"" Inslee said, "People are actually diagnosed in their homes and do not actually go to the doctor's office because they can infect people in the office." is one of 1

8 states that allow parents to decide to vaccinate their children due to morality, personal or other beliefs.

Eckhart said she doesn't have anything that would change her mind to vaccinate her child. "I think we are pretty much made up of our kids in the way we are raising them and that's our right as parents," she said.

Thousands have been exposed when those sick with measles have shown up in public places Like the Portland Trailblazers play. Public health experts say the science does not back up the claims made by anti-vaccination groups and some describe these outbreaks as self-inflicted wounds in communities where they pop up.

exemption but that is in the early stages.

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