5 More Yeshivas Allowed Unvaccinated Students Attend Helping Spread Measles

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WILLIAMSBURG — The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) is naming names. Today it announced five more schools defied its mandate by allowing unvaccinated students to attend school, as the Brooklyn’s measles toll climbs to 158.

The DOHMH first barred unvaccinated students from attending schools in ultra-Orthodox communities last December. While some complied, two weeks ago, the DOHMH announced a single unvaccinated student with measles had infected 21 others after Yeshiva Kehilath Yakov in Williamsburg ignored DOHMH’s mandate. The school has been connected to 28 cases of students and 14 other cases of individuals falling sick, contributing to the spread of measles.

The schools named are:

  • Bnos Square of Williamsburg (382 Willoughby Ave),
  • Bnos Chayil (712 Wythe Ave),
  • Bnos Chayil (345 Hewes St),
  • Tiferes Bnos (585 Marcy Ave), and
  • Simche Kinder (808 Myrtle Ave).

Three of the five schools had children attend while contagious.

Statistics about the outbreak so far:

  • 137 of 158 cases are kids under 18.
  • So far noone has died, but 11 individuals were hospitalized, with one child in the intensive care unit.
  • Just this past week, the Department identified 25 cases.
  • Most of these recent cases are from Williamsburg, two were from Borough Park.
  • Five people, including the initial case of measles, brought measles back from a visit to Israel, one came from the U.K. and one from Ukraine, though none of the most recent 25 had traveled.

For more information, New Yorkers can visit www.nyc.gov/health and search for “measles,” and #311 has a list of facilities that can provide MMR at low or no cost.

Gothamist checked in on a Misinformation Hotline Stokes Fear Of Vaccines In Ultra-Orthodox Community earlier this week, looking for reasons of why there is a reluctance to vaccinate in the Orthodox Jewish community.

In the meantime, Assemblywoman Fahy (Albany) and Senator Liz Krueger (Manhattan) have bills in Albany to allow teenagers 14 and older to get necessary vaccines themselves over their parents’ objections – legislation that the New York chapters of the American Academy of Pediatrics expressed support for earlier this week.

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