Home Health News New York City threatens yeshivas with closure amid measles outbreak – WABC-TV

New York City threatens yeshivas with closure amid measles outbreak – WABC-TV

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WILLIAMSBURG, Brooklyn (WABC) — The New York City Department of Health is threatening yeshivas in Williamsburg with violations and possible closure if non-vaccinated students are allowed to attend classes during the current measles outbreak.

The outbreak in the Orthodox Jewish community is now at 285 cases since it began last October.

In December, the health department ordered yeshivas and childcare centers serving the Orthodox Jewish community in the affected zip codes in Brooklyn to exclude all non-vaccinated students from attending school or daycare until the outbreak was declared over.

Then, in January, one yeshiva in Williamsburg fell out of compliance with the exclusion mandate, allowing non-vaccinated children back into school or daycare.

Officials say this single yeshiva is connected to more than 40 cases.

The health department has since issued Commissioner’s Orders to all yeshivas in Williamsburg to comply with the mandatory exclusion of non-vaccinated children or face violations subject to fines and possible school closure.

Measles is a highly contagious disease and can cause pneumonia, encephalitis, and in rare cases, death. There have been no fatalities in the current outbreak, and only three measles-related deaths in the past two decades.

The vast majority of cases are children under 18 years of age, while there have been 39 cases in adults.

Ahead of Passover, the health department is urging all New Yorkers, especially those in the Orthodox Jewish community, to get the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine to prevent further spread of the virus.

Health officials say individuals traveling to areas with ongoing large outbreaks, including Israel, Europe, upstate New York, and other parts of the United States should make sure they and their children are appropriately vaccinated with MMR.

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