SPRING VALLEY, N.Y. (FOX 5 NY) - An ongoing measles outbreak in New York—at least 105 cases in Rockland County and at least 55 in Brooklyn—is the worst to hit the state in recent history.
A significant portion of the Hasidic Jewish communities in New York has moved away from vaccinations. Clusters of the outbreak have emerged from Rockland County to Borough ark to South Williamsburg.
Schools that have at least 20 percent of students are not vaccinated require those students to stay home until the outbreak is in control.
Measles is incredibly infectious and can spread airborne even hours after an infected person has left the room. Vaccinations are 97 percent effective.
"Statistics say that a person who's not vaccinated against measles actually has a 90 percent chance of acquiring measles if they're just around someone else who has it," said Dr. Jennifer Caudle, an associate professor at Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine
Some members of the Hasidic community in Rockland County have accused health officials of anti-Semitism for strongly suggesting their children be vaccinated.
But health officials rebut that, saying that to not take steps to protect these children would be more of a disservice to their community than anything else.
At the intersection of opinion and science, a measles outbreak lives on.
"Some areas of New York State are currently experiencing a measles outbreak, including the lower Hudson Valley and parts of New York City," the state's Health Department website states. "Measles spreads easily and can be dangerous to anyone who is not vaccinated. If you have questions about measles or the measles vaccine, call the New York State Measles Hotline at 888-364-4837."