MEASLES OUTBREAK GROWS: Boro Park Newborns in ICU; Lakewood 11 Cases; Monsey 68 Cases; Rabbonim Slam Anti-Vaxxers

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The measles outbreak is spreading in Chareidi communities throughout the Tri-State area. The outbreak is mostly affecting the Frum population, fueled by anti-vaccine propaganda spread by a small minority of the community. Not only is the anti-vaxxer cult responsible for this outbreak, but they are responsible for anti-Semitic propaganda that has begun spreading online – specifically targeting Jews because of failing to get vaccinated.

OCEAN COUNTY , NJ (LAKEWOOD)

The following is a summary with new and ongoing information with respect to the measles outbreak from the Ocean County Health Department.

  • There are now 11 confirmed measles cases.
  • There are also seven potential cases under investigation.
  • Vaccination is encouraged and those children involved with exposure to a confirmed case may be subject to an order of exclusion, if unvaccinated.
  • The Ocean County Health Department continues to support and highly encourage the exclusion of non-vaccinated children from schools, preschools and daycares in the outbreak area. These entities have the authority to make that decision when an outbreak has been declared by the New Jersey Department of Health.
  • People are reminded to check their immunization records and if there is any sign of symptoms to contact your healthcare provider prior to showing up at that provider’s office so that appropriate arrangements can be made for examination or treatment.
  • The potential for spreading infection exists four days prior and four days after a measles rash onset.
  • People can become ill from measles from 5 to 21 days after being exposed to the virus.
  • Measles-like symptoms include fever, rash, runny nose, cough, loss of appetite and pink eye.
  • Measles can spread through coughing and sneezing and can live on surfaces and in the air for up to two hours.
  • 30% of measles cases involve additional serious health complications.

An audio recording of Hagaon HaRav Uren Reich, the Rosh Yeshiva of Woodlake, is currently viral on social media. The shiur was recorded THREE YEARS AGO, but the words are timely. YWN has confirmed that Rav Reich’s opinion on the matter is the same, and even stronger now than before against the anti-vaxxers.

BROOKLYN, NY (WILLIAMSBURG, BORO PARK ETC)

In the last month, NYC Health Department Officials have confirmed at least 17 cases of measles in Williamsburg and Borough Park. That number is expected to rise, officials said, as additional cases are currently under investigation.

Two infants have been placed into the Intensive Care Unit at Maimonides Medical center after having been diagnosed with the disease.

ROCKLAND COUNTY (MONSEY, NEW SQUARE, SPRING VALLEY)

There are 68 confirmed cases of measles within Rockland County as well as 11 suspected cases. That’s a jump of 13 cases in just four days. County Department of Health officials said that the entire county should be considered at risk. Even people previously considered immune — anyone born before 1957 and anyone who has received two doses of measles vaccine — could catch the highly contagious disease.

Health officials tightened restrictions on schools in the geographic area where the outbreak is concentrated. All schools in New Square and any school in Spring Valley or Monsey where the immunization rate is lower than 80 percent, must keep un- or under-vaccinated students at home.

The restrictions, which affect 34 schools, will apply until 21 days after the last measles case is confirmed in the county — and officials acknowledge that that could be months away.

The county also wants children to be vaccinated earlier than usual. Instead of waiting till 12 months, any child 6 months or older or any adult who has not received their first MMR vaccine yet should get their first MMR vaccine now.

CHICAGO, IL

The following letter was released today, and signed by HaRav Shmuel Fuerst, the Dayan of Agudath Yisroel of Illinois, and HaRav Yona Reiss, Ava Beth Din of the Chicago Rabbinical Council.

YWN has previously published an audio recording of HaRav Fuerst of Chicago regarding the vaccinations. Rav Fuerst joined the growing list of Poskim releasing Piskei Halacha directed towards the anti-vaxxers, following the measles outbreak which has spread across many Chareidi communities.

Rav Fuerst says he did alot of research into the issue (of vaccinations), and released the following message (audio below, transcribed by YWN):

“Every child must have vaccination shots. And a school should not take in any kids that were not vaccinated because of the Issur of ‘Lo Saamod Al Dam Reacha’ – because another child can catch this sickness. It can be measles, mumps, polio or any of these types of illnesses which are almost completely unheard of, and now we are hearing of them because people are not getting vaccinations.

“If you have a playgroup, you must make sure that all the children are vaccinated. If there is a child who is not vaccinated, you (the playgroup owner) must notify all the other parents, because you are putting them all in jeopardy”.

Rav Fuerst says this applies to children simply going to play at another child’s home. If they are unvaccinated, the other family must be notified.

ISRAELI POSKIM – WHOEVER DOESN’T VACCINATE IS A MURDERER

“Whoever isn’t vaccinated is a murderer” – so reads a Kol Koreh signed by leading Gedolim and Poskim in Eretz Yisroel. The letter was issued in an attempt to curb the rampant spread of the Measles currently spreading through Chareidi communities in Israel, as well as in other communities in Israel and around the world.

The Gedolim who signed the Kol Koreh include: Hagaon HaRav Yitzchak Zilberstein, Hagaon HaRav Shimon Ba’adani, Hagaon HaRav Sriel Rosenberg, Hagaon HaRav Moshe Shaul Klein and Hagaon HaRav Menachem Mendel Lubin.

YWN reported about a letter released by Hagaon HaRav Moshe Sternbuch, who stated specifically it is the responsibility of every father to make certain his children are vaccinated, bringing quotes from Shulchan Aruch citing the matter of שפיחת דמים, causing loss of life.

Measles is highly contagious, so anyone who is not protected against measles is at risk of getting the disease.

People who are unvaccinated risk getting infected with measles and spreading it to others, and they may spread measles to people who cannot get vaccinated because they are too young or have specific health conditions.

Individuals are considered protected or immune to measles if:

• they were born before 1957

• have received two doses of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine

• have had measles confirmed by a health care provider

• or have a lab test confirming immunity

Symptoms include a fever, rash, cough, conjunctivitis or runny nose, and they could appear 10 to 12 days after exposure.

The virus can remain in the air or on surfaces for up to two hours.

To prevent the spread of illness, health officials are advising individuals who may have been exposed and who have symptoms consistent with measles to contact their health care provider, a local clinic, or a local emergency department before going for care.

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)




37 COMMENTS

  1. With all due respects to Rabbis Fuerst and Reiss. The science you have based this ruling on is inaccurate.Therefore your Psak has to be considered null and void.

    REST OF COMMENT EDITED

    Moderators Note: Rabbi Fuerst and Rabbi Reiss had the guts to sign a paper. While you hide under “flatbushantivaxxer”.

  2. These headlines are divisive and wrong and are causing strife and suffering in klal yisroel.

    As said many times before there are rabbanim and roshei yeshiva who clearly speak against getting vaccinations.

    By just constantly fanning the flames of machlokes you are doing a huge disservice to klal yisroel.

    Moderators Response: “there are rabbanim and roshei yeshiva who clearly speak against getting vaccinations”

    NAME THEM – SHOW THE WORLD THEIR SIGNATURES DURING AN OUTBREAK. A LETTER SIGNED THIS WEEK.

  3. I have personally spoken to rabbanim and roshei yeshivos and they have told me not to innoculate.
    However I did not receive their permission to advertise there names, it is very likely that they are literally scared for their saftey as what happened to an individual in Lakewood that tried to just represent a different opinion.
    I do belive that the right thing in this very divisive and horrible situation is to have a letter from the undisputed godol Hador, Rav Chaim Shlit”a stating clearly if we should or should not innoculate and put a rest to this horrible group bashing, unrestrained motzei shem rah, etc etc etc. I know some online sites, NOT YESHIVA WORLD, that will not even allow any remotly anti vaccination opinion be posted?? it has really become ridiculous and uncontrolled.

    I am litterally pleading with any frum yid that wants to put an end to this horrible situation to please get a psak from Rav Chaim Shlit”a I am sure it will be a real nachas ruach to HKB”H.

  4. 1)what was the rebbetzins philly statement?

    2)what are the details of the BP newborns? Where did they catch? Were moms immune? One top pediatrician said that moms dont pass enough immunity. Others say moms do pass. Real full herd immunity would have helped. Please ask for a simple blood test called “titers” every few years. It saves lives.

  5. To Flatbushanti and josh, as the moderator asked- please name any Rabbonim who have recently come out against vaccinations. And my request still remains on the table, please detail which medical school you attended, if you are licensed to practice, where you completed your medical residency training at and under which certifying Medical Director, and how many years of medical career experience you have. I ask this because in other postings you’ve argued against medical doctors and have insulted them that you know better than them. Just as you will detail the list of Rabbonim against he vaccine, I’d like to see your medical expertise and credentials to fully responsibly and accurately source your arguments and knowledge.

  6. @josh18 – Rav Chaim also forbids using electricity in Eretz Yisroel on Shabbos, holds you need to wear a hat with the brim up, holds you need to grow your beard down to your waste, holds a man is not allowed to wear a watch and many other things.

    STOP PICKING AND CHOOSING.

    Listen to the darn doctors, and cut the murder out. You people are reshoyim arurim. Enough already.
    All of a sudden, Rav Chaim is the Posek for you crazies. What a joke.

  7. Bulldozer,

    your hateful and acrimonious tone only supports my opinion.

    Why the accusations and venom??

    Rav Chaim is the undisbuted godol hadol, I truly belive if he gave his final psak all bnei torah and orthodox jewry will follow.

  8. Rav Chaim Shlit”a is on record saying that his children and grandchildren are all vaccinated. The case of ‘forcing a school to take in an unvaccinated child’ was referring to a cancer patient. You can listen to Dr. Indik on Headlines that was linked on YWN before for all the details. Not that it matters. They will not listen, they are smarter than all of us and have figured out the conspiracy. It’s ironic that they yell ‘bitachon’ while they are the ones who are trusting the (junk)science that they read online. I have no idea if vaccinations work or not, the doctors say it does, the halacha is that we follow doctors. I have bitachon in Hashem, and I follow His system. They can have bitachon in the internet. The problem is that they are causing sickness and death. That’s why I am happy that YWN keeps this in the front. We must keep hammering.

  9. How much does a halachic opinion count if the author or posek is asking that their name not be placed behind it?

    A person either believes what they preach or they dont. Of course a personal sheila to a rebbi is specifically for an individual under specific circumstances. However, stating it is assur to get vaccinated is meant for an entire people- and if a rabbi doesnt want to place his name on it and stand up to defend it, I would be very hesitant to take it seriously.

    It’s either Torah or it’s not. It’s either Halacha or it’s not.

  10. OPEN QUESTION TO ANYONE.
    Can someone tell me why is the year 1957 so significant. And anyone born before 1957 is considered immune?
    Especially since we have sooo many experts here.

  11. You murdering anti-vaxxers! Don’t you understand? We don’t want you in our communities or our schools! Do what you want but do it someplace else! 2 neonates in Boro Park in ICU because of people like you!! You’re killing babies!!! You know nothing about medicine or science and your “research” is nonsense! If you want the psak of Gedolim, here you go:
    “Whoever isn’t vaccinated is a murderer” – so reads a Kol Koreh signed by leading Gedolim and Poskim in Eretz Yisroel. The letter was issued in an attempt to curb the rampant spread of the Measles currently spreading through Chareidi communities in Israel, as well as in other communities in Israel and around the world.
    The Gedolim who signed the Kol Koreh include: Hagaon HaRav Yitzchak Zilberstein, Hagaon HaRav Shimon Ba’adani, Hagaon HaRav Sriel Rosenberg, Hagaon HaRav Moshe Shaul Klein and Hagaon HaRav Menachem Mendel Lubin.

    If you’re not going to vaccinate, go live on a commune somewhere where you can’t hurt normal people!

  12. Rabbanim are not doctors, have not studied immunology and have absolutely no business telling people about vaccinations.
    What kind of dumb people have we become that we run to a Rav for a pasak on an issue he knows nothing about?
    We have scientists working for decades on this issue, research and papers proving the effects of vaccinations, we’ve practically eradicated deathly diseases and silly people run to irresponsible rabbonim that have no idea what they’re talking about.
    Chochmo bagoyim taamin.
    Let’s cut the stupidity, Jews are supposed to be smart.

  13. To josh, you don’t see anti-vaxxer opinions, because they have zero medical credibility.

    The simple fact is this, there is an epidemic of measles running through the chairedi communities in Israel, and in the United States, specifically in areas with high concentrations of charedi Jews. And this outbreak is directly related to the fact that these communities have not been vaccinating their children.

    That’s the reality, and there is nothing any anti-vaxxer can say to dispute the very real and countable cases being diagnosed on a daily basis. That you do not see similar outbreaks in vaccinated communities points directly to the lack of vaccinations in these Jewish communities.

    TGI Shabbes makes the very clear argument, asking you directly what your medical background is. That’s the question that should be addressed, not some more fear-mongering and conspiracy theories.

  14. Josh, what makes you so sure that all Jews will follow Rav Chaim’s final psak? There’s no chance that I will discount about just every local and regional Rav who advised us to become vaccinated. Secondly, with regards to my health, that isn’t a question that I ask my Rav about- as it’s not appropriate and not something he is an expert in. I know there are some people who will ask their Rav about every cut and scrape on their body (no sarcasm or exaggeration intended). It’s not an halachic Shayla. We follow the academy of pediatrics and every primary and specialty doctor that we’ve been to, and we’ve gotten second, third, forth medical opinions. We follow medical journal recommendations based upon medical and scientific research from doctors from around the world from various demographics and religions. The only opinion you seem to have is your non-medical personal opinion.

  15. @josh18, we are all waiting for you to show us a letter from one single rov saying anti vaxers are correct. ONE ROV you claim you have a few yet not one has come out in public nor will you give any names. Until you do your word is considered falsehood and can not be taken seriously. Hats off and a big y asher koach to all the gedolim, rabonim and doctors that did come out in public and out their names on paper saying every single child should get vaccinated.

  16. Josh 18 – did you listen to Rabbi Reich? Rav Chaim says that you shouldn’t’t take a Dor Yishorim test. Will you follow that advice? You are just shopping for excuses and even if Rav Chaim told you to vaccinate you would find someone else to ‘rely’ on. My children are nebach caught in this cult and they won’t listen to anyone including our family Daas Torah. I have been promised letter and ‘research’ and two weeks have gone by – nothing. One discredited doctor was all I was given. This is what a cult will do to people and we can’t even blame you Nebach. Cults take away peoples Daas and you can’t even see that. You will surely say that the rest of the world is a cult just as the people in asylum’s say that they were locked up to protect from the rest of the world that has gone mad.
    All we can do is try to protect our children from the damage that your children will potentially do to them.
    Hashem Yirachem.

  17. chaim11211, josh will most likely never compile a list of recent Rabbonim against vaccination sourcing and linking his arguments to actual substance. Even with a list of Rabbonim, I’m still awaiting josh’s complete medical credentials and/or the list of licensed medical professionals who believe vaccinations are detrimentally harmful for one’s health. I’ll be glad to provide a list of Rabbonim and Medical doctors sourcing who are in favor of vaccination, if you ask for it. I am not a doctor and didn’t go to medical school, so I ask my doctors and specialists for medical advice. I am not fit to provide medical advice, so I’m curious how/why you are credentialed to? If your sources continue to remain anonymous then respectfully you have no purpose being in this dialogue on YWN.

  18. Baal boose, before 1957 there was no required vaccinations for measels, so it’s assumed that if you’re alive today and we’re born before 1957 that you got the measels, recovered and developed immunity against it.
    Once the vaccinations started less people got the measels (BH), so if you weren’t vaccinated you’re at risk when there is an epidemic.

  19. Answer to Baal boose and slight correction to chasid: Measles vaccine became available in 1963. Prior to 1957, there were multiple annual outbreaks of measles. Each year, 3-4 million people were infected. If you were born before 1957, there’s a nearly 100% chance that you had measles, and, if you are still alive, you weren’t one of the 500 people in the US who died from measles each year. If your brain is normal, you probably weren’t one of the 1,000 who got encephalitis (brain infection and swelling) each year from measles. And, if you don’t remember being hospitalized as a child, you probably are not one of the 48,000 people who were hospitalized due to measles each year. If you were born before 1957 and made it through all of that, you likely had measles and are immune. (And, yes, I am a doctor.)

  20. I know I mentioned this already somewhere else on here, but I will add it to the comments here as well – please don’t automatically judge and attack all parents who don’t vaccinate. While some are making a choice, others are dealing with specific medical situations (such as cancer) where it is not safe for the kids to be vaccinated right now.

    May all of klal yisroel and the world have a refuah shelaima.

  21. To TGIShabbos: Like Dr. Roberts said – there is No point in arguing with these Anti-vaxxers. They are part of a cult. Cults never listen to reason. IMHO, belonging to a cult is Avodah Zorah.
    We live in a generation where Frum schools don’t allow kids from homes with TV & unfiltered internet in them, but for sure until now, all Unvaxxed kids were allowed in!

  22. To all the anti vaxxers-

    I’m a registered nurse and have done extensive research and worked in the medical field for years.

    First of all, thank you for not vaccinating your children. Your selfish attitude (or the selfish attitude of your Rav) has lead to an increase in diseases that have been basically diminished. Polio, measles, diphtheria, mumps, rubella etc. Used to be rampant and literally killed thousands of people. When vaccinations against these diseases came out, the numbers of deaths dropped significantly. This has been proven medically and scientifically. If this isn’t enough proof then you have serious issues.

    When we vaccinate the population, it’s not only to protect the person your vaccinating. It’s to protect the vulnerable people (infants, children, pregnant ladies, the elderly, immunocompromised individuals- cancer, on specific medications or with illness) that cannot vaccinate. This creates fewer people to carry these diseases and who will come into contact with those that cannot vaccinate. This is why it’s so vital to vaccinate. It’s about bein adam lechaveiro, not being selfish.

    All the research about issues with vaccinating is complete garbage and this has been proven BY THE INDIVIDUAL HIMSELF who came up with the research in the first place.

    As someone who has had a serious reaction to vaccines, I will 100% vaccinate my children and educate them to do the same.

    Now let me ask you a final question- if you Chas veshalom had a disease and needed medication or surgery and it could literally save your life, would you say, nah Hashem will come through for me. Hashem created medicine as a way to save us. So my dear antivaxxers- please go have a hard look in your mirror and then take your child to get their injections.

  23. Goldie613, no one is attacking people who can’t get immunized for medical reasons. It is precisely because there are individuals who cannot get immunized, or are resistant to immunization, that people want those who can get immunized to do so.

  24. I’m confused. Didn’t many Tishri Yeshiva issue a Kol koreh citing rav Chaim kanievsky’s psak that it is forbidden to throw an unvaccinated student out of class, because he is not a serious threat to anyone?

  25. This statement might be unpopular, but here goes. There is hardly a Rov or even Gadol that is qualified to rule on medical questions. The doctor or other professional with the specific expertise is. The psak must then follow the Rov’s assessment based on the science learned from the expert. Our greatest contemporary poskim have practiced so. Peruse the thousands of teshuvos from Reb Moshe Feinstein ZT”L who was consulted on matters involving science. He always sought the maximum of information from experts. And there are numerous others.

    I am uninterested in what any Gadol or Rov feels about vaccination, until they have been provided with the best scientific information available. Halacha can assume responsibility after that, but never before. When any of these Torah giants is presented with limited, skewed, or fabricated data, their psak becomes meaningless, regardless of their Torah greatness. When asking a shailoh incorrectly, the tshuvah can never be accurate, and it is not the posek’s fault. Yes, I am insinuating that those rabbonim who have previously supported, directly or indirectly, the position of anti-vaxxers, they were being misled by junk science and fraud. With the greatest respect for them, their “psak” is useless, and there is no reason to follow it.

    I’m sure that someone will raise the issue of “אפילו אומר על ימין שהוא שמאל”. If there was an obligation to have full information that was not obtained, this caveat does not apply. Check with your favorite posek, and then try and prove this position wrong.

  26. Goldie613, the reason people are so insistent that everyone get vaccinated is because some people, like cancer patients, cannot get vaccinated. No one judges a parent of a cancer patient who doesn’t vaccinate that child. We want everyone who can vaccinate to vaccinate so that the cancer patient will not be at risk.

  27. who_cares- ‘Keep’ should not be capitalized. Also there should be a hyphen by anti_vaxxers. Also there should be a period at the end of the sentence. It’s a chilul Hashem when peple come on and read yeshivaworld and they see jews dont use proper puncuation and grammer and don’t no how to spel