In October 2018, a Measles Outbreak started in Rockland County, New York primarily in the Orthodox Jewish community. The outbreak is also in Orange County and in Brooklyn which are both in New York State, and in Ocean County, New Jersey. The outbreak started in October 2018 during Suckkos when Measles-infected travelers spent their time in a small Hasidic-populated village in Rockland which is only a third of a mile in size. By being in a small area, they essentially contaminated the same few public places again and again. Compounding the issue is the fact that almost 41% of the Hasidic population is under the age of 10; the age most likely to be infected with Measals, compared to Manhattan where less than 9% of the population is in the Measles-contracting age. In fact, 57% of those infected with the Measlas in Rockland County as of Thursday March 28th, 2019, are under the age of seven years old (Update: 67% cases in NYC as of Monday April 8th are under the age of five.
The third factor is that unlike in Manhattan where it is unlikely for overseas travelers to repeatedly mingle with the same random people, it is different in the Hasidic community where they will repeatedly be in the vicinity of the same people again and again especially during holidays. This is important because Passover is starting Friday night April 19th, which means overseas travelers will be here again; which means they will continue to be in the same few places; with a Measles-contracting population due to their young age, and the travelers will repeatedly be in the vicinity of the same people. It is therefore hopeful that the outbreak will be fully contained the next few weeks. Otherwise, the risk is that the outbreak will be prolonged for many more months.
On Thursday, March 28th, 2019, OJPAC co-founder Yossi Gestetner sat down with PIX11's Jay Dow to talk about the outbreak and about the Emergency that has been declared on it in Rockland County.
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