The decision to get the measles vaccine is not just a matter of personal choice, writes Bruce Lee for Forbes.
Measles viruses can continue to spread among a herd as long as they can keep finding new members of the herd to infect.
And who are those members who can be infected? Those who are not vaccinated and have no immunity to the measles. Besides actually getting the measles, which brings risks of serious complications like pneumonia and inflammation of the brain, getting vaccinated is the only science-backed way to generate this immunity. One dose of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) is about 93% effective in preventing a measles infection and two doses being about 97% effective. Indeed, as the WHO indicates, from 2000 to 2016, increasing the number of kids worldwide who got their first dose of measles vaccine from 72% to 85% helped decrease measles deaths by 84% to 89,780.