The history of the measles vaccine
I'm sure you've seen the news -- from January 1 to February 28, there were a reported 206 individual cases of measles in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Small pockets of infection have been reported in states across the country, including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, and Washington.
While the measles may sound like a relic of the past in the United States since the advent of the measles vaccine in the 1960s, it persists globally. I spoke with Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Dr. Frank Esper, of the Center for Pediatric Infectious Diseases at Cleveland Clinic, and Dr. Dana Hawkinson, an infectious disease specialist at the The University of Kansas Health System, who weighed in on what life was like before the vaccine, how the vaccine changed measles in America, and ways to combat the damaging messaging from the anti-vaccine movement.
Check out my story for Healthline here: