The first quarter of 2019 is barely over and the US is on pace to more than surpass the highest number of confirmed measles cases in 25 years. So far, 555 cases have been confirmed in 20 states with notable outbreaks in Washington and New York. Officials in New York state, where 285 cases have been confirmed, have declared a public health emergency and have ordered mandatory vaccinations for one Brooklyn neighborhood. Smaller outbreaks are occurring in California and New Jersey.
Meanwhile, 1,200 deaths have been blamed on measles in Madagascar where more than 115,000 cases have been confirmed since September. At what point should mandatory vaccinations be ordered without medical exceptions? Should the unvaccinated face criminal charges if they infect another? Would you file a civil suit if the disease mutates and infects you or someone you love?