Many of my social media friends and real world friends work as pediatric providers and nurses. Much of what I read in the blogosphere and my custom news feeds focuses around healthcare. If I knew how to filter out the word used the most often, I have no doubt that it would be measles. The past few weeks I have had several very concerned seniors asking about getting a measles vaccine. The coverage of this measles outbreak is ridiculous and disproportionate to the threat involved.
41,249 people committed suicide.
33,854 people died in motor vehicle accidents
2,800 people died from medical complications
10 people died of malaria, ( yes ,malaria)
46,717 people died of drug overdose ( many of them prescription) and
29,000 of an alcohol induced deaths.
Measles? ZERO. Really. ZERO. There were 159 confirmed measles cases from Jan-Aug of 2013 and no one died.
This coverage and the resulting near panic is because measles is just sexier to the news folks than the 249,000 folks that die from diabetes related causes each year. Showing pictures of a measles rash gets the CNN endless loop of coverage. My physician friends are furious at the anti-vaccine crowd in a way I never see them at parents who feed their kids junk food, which will kill so many more than measles.
There is a viral video of pediatrician saying he will not allow the non vaccinated or the alternate vaccine scheduled kids in his practice. This sort of over reaction serves no one. We should always be careful with our patients with compromised immune systems. We need to put down our pitch forks and torches and let the measles monster go so we can direct out time and talent to much more pressing health concerns.