Canadian Kids’ Health at Risk by the Stupidity of Christian Parents

Measles Outbreak Vaccination

Health authorities in Canada are struggling to curtail an outbreak of measles that spread from a conservative region where Christian parents refuse to have their children vaccinated. Two students from Chilliwack’s Mount Cheam Christian School were sent home after they contracted the disease but many others had been infected by then. More than 100 students are suspected of having measles currently, which is why the school’s authorities decided to shut for vacation a week earlier.

“Members of our congregation do not believe vaccinations are safe. They are worried about administering vaccines to our children and vaccination does not automatically mean you are immune to the disease,” said Rev Adriaan Geuze on behalf of the 1,200 member Reformed Congregation of North America.

As of March 18, five cases of measles have been confirmed in Fraser Valley, six in Prince Edward Island, four in Calgary and two in Ottawa. Toronto has issued a warning to all Canadians traveling to the Philippines, where 24 children reportedly died of the disease. Health-care officials are convinced that those who visited the Philippines recently are responsible for having imported the virus to the country.

“This is a classic example of slipping behind the optimal immunization rate. People who are not immunized travel and they bring the virus back to Canada with them. And this is what happens when you do. It spreads,” said Glen Armstrong, head of the University of Calgary’s department of microbiology, immunology and infectious diseases.

While some have gone to get vaccinations at mobile stations set up within the communities, many others have refused because either they are scared of the vaccine’s side effects or due to religious convictions. According to health officials, a vaccination rate of 95 percent is mandatory for community immunity to work but the rates are as low as 60 percent in certain areas like the East Fraser region.

On March 21, the Public Health Agency of Canada issued a call to all Canadian parents to have their children vaccinated while making note that measles is rare in Canada because of the high national immunization rate. Measles is a highly contagious disease that can lead to encephalitis, pneumonia and even death.

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