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Health officials issue quarantine at two California colleges — here's why

An ounce of prevention

Photo by Al Seib/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Health officials announced a quarantine for some students and teachers at two California universities over concerns about a possible measles outbreak.

More than 200 students and teachers who may have been exposed to the highly contagious disease have been asked to stay home.

The universities affected were UCLA and Cal State Los Angeles, where officials say at least one student has been infected with the disease.

Only five people have thus far contracted the disease in Los Angeles County, but officials hope to prevent the kind of outbreaks that have been seen in other states. At least 38 people have been infected in the state of California this year.

The quarantine was ordered for those persons who might have been in contact with those carrying the disease, but who also could not provide proof of receiving a vaccine for measles.

Officials says that anti-vaccination propaganda might explain why there is a rise in states like California, despite the very strict vaccination laws there.

Dr. Armand Dorian, the chief medical officer at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital, explained that outbreaks are often caused by travelers to other countries who pick up a disease and import it back in the U.S., but there's another reasons too.

"The more recent generation of parents have not vaccinated as many children, so the potential for it to be spread has increased, which heightens our fear," he explained.

"The potential for illness outweighs any other side effect" of vaccinations, Dorian explained. "That risk is quite high. Measles actually kills people, so we have to take that really seriously.

"Who does it kill?" he asked rhetorically. "Usually it kills those young people who don't have the ability to make a decision."

Dorian said that the chances that someone will get measles from an infected person in the same room is about 90 percent.

Here's a news report about the quarantine:

Quarantines at 2 schools amid measles outbreak

One last thing…
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