I have noticed a popular link on Social Media sites that leads to an interactive map. This map shows colorful circles over a world map. With link titles like, “One map sums up the damage caused by the anti-vaccination movement,”it gives the illusion that these explosive circles are the recent result of reduced vaccinations.
I am extremely pro-vaccine, but this is not the type of chart we should look at for the subject of vaccines and preventable dissease. Here are some of the key issues with this map:
“Leaders at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are expected to hold a media tele-briefing at 12:30 p.m. Thursday to address the recent spike in measles cases in the U.S. As of November 30, there have been 175 cases reported in 2013.”--WXYZ Deroit News
I believe that this is shown as a single dot in the center of the US, as if it was a single outbreak in Kansas.
“4 Measles cases confirmed in Orange County: Orange County Health Officials are warning about a measles epidemic that they say is putting everyone in Central Florida at risk.”--WKMG local 6 Orlando
I made my own chart to address the rates of vaccination and illness rates. I choose to use the US because I live here, and I choose the MMR vaccine because I think that Rubella, Measles, and Mumps are very serious diseases that should be eliminated. My mother contracted Rubella (German measles) while pregnant with my sister in the 1960’s, before the rubella vaccine was available. Beth Ann was born severely retarded, deaf, and nearly blind. This is an extremely serious disease that many young people haven’t even heard of.
For my graph, I used data collected by the CDC and WHO. I took into account the changing population of US by presenting the data as cases per million Americans. You can see my raw data and detailed list of sources here .
Click here to view a large PDF of this graph.
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