Politics

CDC Director: Illegal Immigration Did Not Cause Measles Outbreak

| by Ethan Brown
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) addressed the measles outbreak on Feb.23, stating that they don’t believe undocumented immigrants brought the disease to the United States, despite politicians that state otherwise.

The director for the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease recently eliminated the idea that illegal immigrants brought measles to the U.S. from other nations. The disease has now affected many communities throughout the country, like in California.

“We don’t have evidence to support that,” said Dr. Anne Schuchat, the director of the center. 

Facts from the CDC support the doctor’s position. According to the CDC’s website, there are around 20 million measles cases worldwide every year, with only a few entering the United States.  However, politicians have insisted that America’s open borders are at fault for the measles outbreak.

Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Alabama) is one of those politicians. He said: “I don’t think there is any health care professional who has examined the facts who could honestly say that Americans have not died because the disease is brought into America by illegal aliens who are not properly health care screened, as lawful immigrants are.  Unfortunately, our kids just aren’t prepared for a lot of the diseases that come in and are borne by illegal aliens.”

Jane Seward, deputy director of the CDC’s viral disease division, disagrees with the congressman’s statement. She said, “The only way it can come is from other countries, usually from U.S. travelers who travel abroad and who are not protected through vaccinations, who get infected overseas and bring it back.”

The measles outbreak this year began in California when a visitor already infected with measles overseas went to Disneyland.  From there, the disease spread to 17 other states and the nation’s capital.

While the CDC has experience and knowledge in combating the disease, it is quite expensive to contain.  According to the Wall Street Journal, it cost $800,000 to isolate seven different cases of measles in two Arizona hospitals this year. Just to track everyone who may have been infected with measles cost $140,000.

Sources: Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, cdc.gov

Photo Credit: Screenshot, WikiCommons, guardianlv.com