This comes as the number of confirmed measles cases continues to rise in Rockland County, and health officials on Tuesday ordered almost everyone in a heavily Orthodox Jewish New York City neighborhood to be vaccinated for measles or face fines.
Dr Oxiris Barbot, the New York City health commissioner, said there had been reports of "measles parties" in the area in which parents deliberately expose their children to measles so that they become naturally immune after contracting the virus.
On Friday they obtained a partial victory: A judge issued an injunction requiring county officials to drop the ban against any child with a "religious exemption", at least until April 19.
Under de Blasio's emergency order, "All persons who reside, work or attend school in the neighborhood of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York and to the parents and/or guardians of any child who resides, works or attends school in the neighborhood of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York", must receive vaccinations or prove a medical exemption applies.
However, state health officials said they are carefully watching the disease as it races through parts of the Northeast, the West Coast and the interior of the country. "We have to stop it now", de Blasio said at a news conference Tuesday.
Officials from the Department of Health say it will impose fines of up to $1,000 on those who have not received the vaccine. Although it has high overall vaccination rates, there are some groups with vaccine hesitancy, public health legal experts said.
America's largest urban area, New York City, has taken the extraordinary move of making vaccinations mandatory for some people who may have been exposed to the measles virus in a hard-hit, predominantly Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn. This outbreak has the second greatest number of infected individuals since measles was eradicated in the country in the 2000s.More news: Lucas Moura Celebrates Hat-Trick On The Pitch With His Young Son
The most recent tally by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows 465 cases across the U.S.so far this year, two-thirds of them in NY state.
Most of the NY cases involved unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated individuals, according to de Blasio's office. The MMR vaccine, she said, is "one of the most highly effective vaccines in terms of protection and it is lifelong".
The number of measles cases continues to skyrocket in the Hudson Valley and one local county announced their first confirmed cases of measles. We will use it prudently, we will use it with restraint, but we will use it to protect the public health of Westchester people.
Governor of Washington Jay Inslee also declared a state of emergency in January, urging immunization and citing the measles outbreak as "an extreme public health risk", according to a CNN article. Those who are too young to receive certain vaccines, have allergies to components of vaccines, or are undergoing medical treatment depend on this herd immunity, as they are unable to be vaccinated themselves.
"There is an element of anti-vaccine supporters and sympathizers who do not want to get shots".
City health officials say the outbreak in Brooklyn began in October when an unvaccinated child visited Israel, where a major outbreak of measles is occurring. "The delay it is what's fueling this outbreak". Six of the children are siblings. "I don't think they should be getting fined, I think another penalty should be given", said Charlette Hamlin, 36, who is in favor of vaccinations for all.