MEASLES OUTBREAK IN LAKEWOOD: Urgent letter from Lakewood’s Pediatric Affiliates

The following letter was released moments ago in response to the Measles Outbreak in Lakewood.

Additionally, private playgroup teachers who would like to make sure their patients are up to date on the MMR – as per current guidelines – should contact their pediatrician for a form letter to have parents fill out with the dates of immunization.


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  1. If a child has a religious exemption do they still need to get vaccinated? Will the schools get shut down if they provide religious exemptions?

  2. I am wondering which religion would object to protecting a persons health!?? Maybe some pagan belief. Not a chance that you are referring to Torah. Sorry,the health department does not recognize pagan priests.

  3. During an outbreak religious exemptions are not allowed by the department of health. They will not force the child to vaccinate but they will not allow the child to attend school and will close down the school despite their verified religious exemptions that are normally accepted. When there is a conflict between freedom of religious practice and what the government considers to be a public health emergency the latter will take precedence. The courts have always tempered the constitutional right to freedom of religious practice when it conflicts with a compelling public interest.

  4. @concerned parent
    I hope that you are not talking about your children but if you are then I am appalled by your selfishness. My child does not have to be exposed to measles because of your ‘religious exemption’.
    And to answer your question in the event of an outbreak the CDC can close any school or deny a child entry to prevent the spread of the disease.

  5. Really!!! Religion!!!! If I need to randomly shoot a weapon in a public area in the name of “religion” would that be allowed? Get a grip of yourself.

  6. Religions such as the Christian Scientists believe that prayer is more effective without medical care. They do not darshan רפא ירפא מכאן שניתן רשות לרופא לרפאות, that medical care is an accepted form of hishtadlus as extrapolated from the Torah. There have also been cases where parents were prosecuted after their children died because they didn’t get them medical care after they got sick.

  7. I wonder if they did safety studies on giving this vaccine to 6 month olds. There must be a reason why they don’t give it to 6 month olds to begin with.

  8. I agree with yottle we have way too much anti semitism right here! Let’s stop hating our own pple! Yes pple have seen adverse life threatening reactions & therefore have stopped vaccinating. The Torah doesn’t say anything about going to a doctor when u are healthy it only talks about going to the doctor when you are sick. Does it really make sense to inject yourself with a vaccine that MAY prevent an illness for a LIMITED amount of time BUT it may also cuase something a lot worse than that illness??? It is a lot safer to have measles ONCE a lifetime than to have to get vaccinated with a risky vaccine every few years for life. How many adults are up to date? So if all unvaccinated kids will be sent out of school will they also send the staff members who are not up to date? How about the bus drivers & cleaning crew? Why only focus on the kids? That part really makes no sense to me at all

    • True that measles may happen once a lifetime if you get through it alive. Duh. Happens to be I know of adults that got it and became sterile.If you do not want to vaccinate then do not blame it on religion. Blame it on your own research or other people research that are not doctors. Each person has his own hashgacha pratis. However there is a mitzvah vnishmartem meod lnafshisechem. WATCH YOURSELF VERY CAREFULLY.

    • What illness is worse than death? People die from measles, pregnant women who contract the illness have miscarriages.

      Does it really make sense to not do your best to protect yourself, your children and the public in general from being exposed to something that has the potential to kill?

      Please tell us about these people in our community that has seen a life threatening adverse reaction to a vaccine.

      If there is no treatment for an illness, how are you supposed to go to the doctor after you have contracted it? What refuah do they have to offer? If a parent has chosen not to vaccinate their children, why bring them to the doctor’s office if you think they might have the measles. There is nothing for the doctor to do. Stay home and ride it out. Have rachmanus on everyone else’s children and don’t expose them to a life threatening illness that you don’t seem to take too seriously. We respect your inane wishes and allow you to remain unvaccinated. Respect us and don’t endanger our children who are too young to receive the protection Hashem has sent us.

    • why would you get measels once in a lifetime? i thought with proper nutrition and healthy water you don’t get measles.

      sarcasm intended.

  9. @S
    You finally changed my mind.
    Until your post I was appalled at the selfish attitude among the anti-vaxer people.
    However now that I read your words – you changed my mind.

    I feel bad for you!
    You’re just plain and simply ignorant. You deserve love and respect together with an education.

  10. This is a plague, pleople are in the icu, there have been deaths.

    Please vaccinate and inhibit the liklyhood of another epidemic.

    The claims of vaccines causing autism are unfounded and studies which published this claim was unfounded.

    If משמרתם לנפשותיכם is not enough לא תעמוד על דם רעיך!!

  11. These days we have a new buzzword we call “weaponization”. Of everything and anything to accuse others of or using it ourselves to gain political power and advantage over others. It is agenda. Religion is likely the first historical use of this currently in vogue tactic of weaponizing every opinion. Let’s stop using this evil and deadly tactic and stop trying to harm each other. Isn’t it bad enough that our children are getting physically sick. Do we really want to add to the emotional and mental harm we cause them already? Shameful and dangerous insanity.

  12. Umm, let’s see… FYI, you will only get measles once in your life because it’s deadly. There are small children who would potentially die from the measles. The welfare of children should always be more important then religion when it involves a fatal disease. This is not saying religion is not important… but the health and welfare of our children comes first #sorry

  13. MMR should not be given to kids below 12 months. Even CDC website States that.
    But then watch Vaxxed documentary what happens to those who get their kids MMR before 36 months, the child.has a much higher chance of getting brain inflamation.

  14. Serious question. If you are vaccinated can you get it? Is it only spread from person to person who are not vaccinated? I know you have to worry about children who are to young to be vaccinated yet but if your vaccinated you don’t have to worry right? Serious question, I am asking because I don’t know.

    • According to the CDC, vaccinated people have a 97% protection from getting it. There is still a small chance of catching it. That is where herd immunity comes in. If everyone gets the vaccine, it won’t spread.

      • Da’as Torah doesn’t mean we are cult members. If your Rosh Yeshiva says he’s moshiach and every other gadol says he’s a faker, “da’as torah” doesn’t mean you have to follow him.

        • My Rosh Yeshiva is a recognized Gadol HaDor who everyone on this site would (hopefully and appropriately) fawn over if he graced your home or institution. He is also the epitome of normalcy. (I would happily name him, but when I try, TLS doesn’t let my comment through.)

  15. All of the worried and concerned people , are you up to date yourself on all the reuquired shots ?
    Did you cancel your cleaning lady for today or did you see her medical records ?
    It’s a yes or no question
    If answer is no , then be honest with yourself , you just can’t respect someone else Dudiny something different then you to your discomfort , but as soon as you get hurt it’s all different story
    Pure sinas hinom

  16. Nobody answered my question which was why are we soooo focused only on unvaccinated kids in schools? Are the staff members up to date? Is your cleaning lady in your home up to date? BTW recently vaccinated kids can shed the virus to others do you keep your kids home after vaccines?

  17. The flu shot is constantly changing and I believe you should not develope an opinion on all vaccines from an incident with the flu shot. Reason being it’s impossible for the manufacturers to perfect the flu shot since each year they are attempting to protect against a different illness.

    ALL other vaccines have been tested, refined and manufactured with much greater effectiveness.

  18. Dear Joe
    I am ok with anyone to make their own educated choice but will not folllow the crowd just because of the bad experience ( DEATH) in my family coursed by vaccine !
    Do you personally know anyone who died from catching measles or flu ?
    But for some reason in little Lakewood community everyone knows of people who for strange non statisticly backed reason all developed BAD BAD reactions AND ILLNESSES after vaccines ( LEUKEMIA)
    I am not taking anymore chances and don’t think anyone would
    Just asking for people to respect and understand this anti vaxx ideolgy is real not shtusim like you all think
    Live and let live
    P.S Did anyone cancel the cleaning help for today , I didn’t get the answer of all really concerned with break out people ?

    • Personal feelings doesn’t mean that someone died or got ill from a flu shot. Did a doctor say that or did you come up with this on your own. There is no proof of anyone getting any illnesses from the MMR vaccine. Anyone that says they no someone that did, makes it up based on their personal feelings, they need something to blame for the illness. There have been multiple studies proving that the MMR vaccine doesn’t cause autism or any other illness but for some reason people believe the conspiracy theory websites instead of the real doctors and scientists that have done real research on the effects of the vaccine.

        • False, it doesn’t say that anywhere on the cdc website.
          Encephalitis is spread from mosquitoe bites nothing to do with MMR just because you know the name of a disease does not mean that you should spread lies. People can develop ITP after getting a viral illness

  19. Wow, the comments that have been posted are ignorant and hateful.

    Lets start with religious exemption. According to the law in 47 states in the USA you may attend school without vaccination provided you hand in a religious or medical exemption, and in some states a philosophical exemption as well. You do not need to be part of any religion to hand in a religious exemption. It doesn’t matter if you are Jewish Catholic or even an atheist. All a religious exemption means, is a deeply held belief.

    Now the question is, why would someone want to hand in a religious exemption??? At the end of the day, no one (not the CDC nor your doctor) can deny that vaccines come with risk, and when there is risk there needs to be choice. I am sorry that people are so terrified of measles, and in their case its probably best that they vaccinate, because their fear of the disease is so great. Other people have actually done their own research instead of listening to fear mongering propaganda and have looked at history and come to the conclusion that measles for the vast majority of people is pretty harmless. In fact Dr. Paul Offit himself said that before the vaccine came out about 3-5 million people got measles and about 500 people died. If you do the math thats about a 0.015% chance of dying. I’m going to guess that those people probably had compromised immune systems to begin with. NO ONE was afraid of the illness in the 1950’s.

    My children happen to be vaccinated and that is a choice I made, but I respect those that choose a different path for their children. They have a right to make that choice and they have a right to be in school. And I certainly don’t hold them accountable for anything.

  20. The Antibody Titer Law, passed in New Jersey in January 2004, allows parents to seek testing to determine a child’s immunity to measles, mumps and rubella. If the child has sufficient antibodies to these illnesses they may not need the second dose of the MMR. This law, also known as Holly’s Law, came about because of the efforts of her parents who were compensated for the loss of their daughter Holly from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Board after the court decided enough evidence showed that Holly died as a result of acute encephalopathy after getting her second MMR vaccine. You can google “Holly’s Law” and “Holly Stavola” for more information on this. (So some parents are worried that their children will chas vshalom die from the measles, while other parents are worried that their children will chas vshalom die from the vaccine.)

    Those who post about the fact that adults near these children (bus drivers, teachers, principals, maintenance staff, adult guests at a simcha) are not targeted for vaccination make a very good point. Do you prevent your children from coming with you to a chasunah or bat mitzvah because maybe some of the adult guests and workers at the simchah are not vaccinated according to the CDC schedule?

    There is an interesting article to read on the halachic perspective of vaccination. If you want to understand better the other side of this issue google “Rabbi Rephoel Szmerla Enriched Parenting.” Even if you do not agree with everything he writes, you will gain a better appreciation of the controversy surrounding this issue.

    Btw, there are ways to detox after a vaccine. You can google “Detox child after vaccine.”

    • the previous letter where dr frank quotes dr zuckerman says that the measles vaccine is 100% effective in preventing measles. So what are the vaxed people afraid of?

  21. As us parents from the surrounding town Toms River are concern these kids from Lakewood come to our parks and contaminate our precious angels. Please keep your kids at home or within your community until they are NOT contaminated any longer.

  22. @ Brando – a big reason for concern is that many children (from families that vaccinate) are too young to get the MMR vaccine (under 12 months), and they are at risk of catching measles as well. One of the recent lakewood cases was a baby in such a situation.

  23. @concerned tr resident – Toms River public schools only have 94% vaccination rate which is not enough for herd immunity.
    Ocean county public schools in general have horrible vaccination numbers below what is required for herd immunity.

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