CDC Says Unvaccinated Children are at Risk

Cases of whooping cough and measles are on the rise. That has prompted the Centers for Disease Control to remind parents that getting children vaccinated on time is a key component to keeping them healthy. Rod Rice reports.

Vaccination rates here and around the country are at the highest rates ever, however those children who have not been vaccinated against serious, but preventable diseases, are at risk. Abigail Shefer is an epidemiologist with the CDC.

"There's been a record high level of measles cases right now, mostly coming in from other countries, but spreading to children in this country who aren't immunized or are too young."

The CDC says there have been 39 cases of measles so far this year and more than 21-thousand of cases For more information, visit whooping cough last year. That puts unvaccinated children at risk. Dr Shefer says parents need to be reminded that before vaccinations, these diseases claimed a lot of young lives every year.

"Over 400 children died of measles before there were vaccines in the U.S., hundreds of children died of pneumococcal disease before there was a vaccine, so you have to remember how severe these diseases can be."

The CDC says vaccines are among the most successful and cost effective public health tools available for preventing disease and death.

Bio photo of Rod Rice

Rod Rice

Local Anchor, Morning Edition

Rod Rice became fascinated with radio at an early age, while sitting on his Grandfather’s lap listening to his "programs" on the big Emerson Radio...