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Summer camp is newest front in battle with measles outbreak



ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – The battle to contain the worst measles outbreak in 27 years has a new front: summer camp.

Vaccinations have been made this summer for campers and staff in several counties of New York City hardest by measles.

Ulster County has taken the extra step of mandating the measles vaccine or proof of immunity at all day camps and overnight camps, becoming the latest county in the area to issue immunization requirements. Rockland County is pleased to announce that this month, following mandates from Sullivan and Orange counties.

"We've been to make sure our t's are crossed and ours are dotted into making sure all of these vaccination records are in-fine through to make sure everything is in compliance, "said Rabbi Hanoch Hecht, of Ulster County's Camp Emunah, which hosts many girls from a Chabad community at Brooklyn's Crown Heights.

" In the past where we accepted religious exemptions for certain things, "said hecht, who is now checking his own blood for immunity," "now we can not."

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A child receives a vaccination against measles by a family physician on April 16, 2018 in the Romanian capital, Bucharest.

Measles still claims young lives in Romania, where nearly 40 children have them in an outbreak that many blame on parents being misled by scare stories that vaccinating them is dangerous. Some 12,000 people have contracted measles since late 2016 in the European Union's second-poorest country, 46 of them died. Out of the dead, 39 years old. One of the worst affected countries in the world. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel MIHAILESCU (Photo credit should read DANIEL MIHAILESCU / AFP / Getty Images)

A family doctor preparing a measles vaccine during a consultation on April 16, 2018 at the Romanian capital, Bucharest. – Measles still claims young lives in Romania, where nearly 40 children have them in an outbreak that many blame on parents being misused by scare stories that vaccinating them is dangerous. Some 12,000 people have contracted measles since late 2016 in the European Union's second-poorest country, 46 of them died. Out of the dead, 39 years old. One of the worst affected countries in the world. (Photo by Daniel MIHAILESCU / AFP)

A nurse was seen vaccinating school children at her school at Lhokseumawe, August 4, 2018, Aceh, Indonesia. Vaccination Measles-Rubella (MR) for Indonesian children is part of the Indonesian government's health program to provide immunity from two dangerous diseases, Rubella and Measles in Indonesian children. (Photo by Fachrul Reza / NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Artists wearing superhero costumes comfort at elementary student while receiving a German Measles, known as Rubella, vaccination in Pekanbaru, Riau province on August 1, 2018 as part of the Indonesian governments health program to combat childhood diseases. (Photo by WAHYUDI / AFP) (Photo credit should read WAHYUDI / AFP / Getty Images)

ALEPPO, SYRIA – APRIL 17: A Syrian child is vaccinated during the measles campaign at Al-Bab district of Aleppo, Syria on April 17 , 2018. Kids fled from Eastern Ghouta's Douma after Assad regime forces' suspected chemical attack on April 7, 2018 receive measles vaccine Al-Bab district of Aleppo. (Photo by Omer Alven / Anadolu Agency / Getty Images)

A Venezuelan woman is being vaccinated against measles in Cucuta, Colombia, at the international brigde Simon Bolivar on the border with Venezuela, on March 21, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Schneyder Mendoza (Photo credit should read SCHNEYDER MENDOZA / AFP / Getty Images)

Venezuelan, Yan Manuel, receives a free measles vaccine given by a volunteer, showing his identity card at the Pacaraima border control, Roraima State, Brazil August 19, 2018. REUTERS / Nacho Doce

A member of the Free Revolutionary Police carries out an inspection on a measles vaccine in the southern Idlib countryside September 17, 2014. Fifteen children died after being vaccinated against measles in northern Syria, resulting in the program being halted, aid workers said on Wednesday, a tragedy likely to damage trust in health services in opposition-held areas. The Free Revolutionary Police is in the process of solving the day-to-day problems in Idlib, the group said. Picture taken September 17, 2014. REUTERS / Khalil Ashawi (SYRIA – Tags: CIVIL UNREST CONFLICT HEALTH)

A girl receives anti-measles vaccination drops at a health center at BASECO compound in Tondo, Manila September 3, 2014. Philippine President Benigno Aquino said on September 1, 2014 between 11 to 13 million people in the country are at risk from measles, polio and rubella (German measles), and asked the public to cooperate in eradicating the preventable diseases, during Monday's launch of a mass national vaccination campaign against measles and polio, reported local media. REUTERS / Erik De Castro (PHILIPPINES – Tags: HEALTH SOCIETY)

A vial of measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and an information sheet is located at Boston's Children's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts February 26, 2015. REUTERS / Brian Snyder (UNITED STATES – Tags: HEALTH)

Rowan Walters, aged four, is referred to MMR injection at the Pediatric Outpatients department at Morriston Hospital in Swansea, south Wales April 6, 2013. Following an increase in the number drop in clinics on Saturday, local media reported. REUTERS / Rebecca Naden (BRITAIN – Tags: SOCIETY HEALTH)

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The state of New York requires summer camps to keep immunization records for all campers but not bar children from attending

Children are required to attend the measles vaccine to attend school in New York, however, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an exemption for children whose parents object to vaccinations on religious grounds.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that as of June 1, more than 1,000 measles cases had been reported in the U.S.. since the start of the year, up from less than 100 cases a year ago. The bulk of those cases have been diagnosed in ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods in Brooklyn and suburban Rockland County.

The CDC recommends everyone over a year old to get the vaccine, except for those who had the disease as children. Those who have had measles are immune.

The vaccine, which became available in the 1960s, is considered safe and highly effective. in 2000. But it has had a resurgence several times, including 667 cases in 2014.

Hecht and others are stressed by most members of the Orthodox community, echoing rabbis in Brooklyn and Rockland County who say it is a anti-vaccination propaganda – not religious teachings – who have resisted inoculations.

The Orthodox Union said it has previously required up-to-date vaccinations, including the MMR vaccine, for its 37 summer programs.

"Hecht said."

Health officials in New York City have taken a tough approach, making measles vaccinations mandatory for everyone living in the Brooklyn neighborhood who could not come to the school and who could not come to school.

Sullivan County is in the heart of the traditional Borscht.

Nowadays, the schools are preparing for the fall of the Catskills and Hudson River Valley.

Belt, and the lake-loading area. Of the 170 state-regulated camps in the county, 139 are Orthodox Jewish camps.

"We draw a population from New York City, where this measles outbreak was," Sullivan County spokesman Dan Hust said. "It was considered prudent and wise."

Not everyone agrees. The orders from Sullivan and Orange counties were challenged in state courts by parents of various religious faiths. However, civil rights attorney Michael Sussman said

New York's removal of religious exemptions.

"We have No issue with that, "said Yoel Landau, director at Camp Rav Tov, a camp for Hasidic boys at Monticello. Landau said schoolboys from NYC attending the camp should have been vaccinated because of the city's order in April.

Rabbi Dovid Teichman, director of Govoah Camp, which caters to Orthodox campers in rural Greene County, said staffers were "combing

"I can not jeopardize anybody," he said.


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