I Hate Measles

January 25, 2013 BY Dr. Natasha Burgert

2011 saw a dangerous resurgence of measles.

In neighborhoods throughout the world, people were getting sickened by this vaccine-preventable disease. And despite measles being declared eliminated in 2000, the US was no longer being spared.

Kansas City, where I work as a general pediatrician, was one of the 17 communities taking a direct hit. The incredibly contagious virus spread through the city in a haphazard, unpredictable way. Clusters of children were being exposed. Many were infected.

Some of the infected Kansas City children were my patients. They were in my care. These were my kids. And at the time of the virus’ arrival, these babies were all under 12 months. All too young to receive a safe, effective vaccine that could have prevented the illness.
The parents of my sick patients stayed awake all night with feverish babies, worrying about a rash that just kept spreading. Some infants suffered from complications and were hospitalized. Meanwhile, I was consumed with disbelief.

How could this be happening in my Kansas City?

The infections were meticulously traced in order to determine the source. My disbelief turned to rage when it became clear these children were infected from a likely vector. A young, unvaccinated person had traveled internationally, had become infected, and brought measles home.

My patients suffered from a vaccine-preventable disease because of someone else’s choice to not vaccinate their child.

The uncomfortable simplicity of this conclusion was haunting. The parents of my sick patients had made the right choice. They had vaccinated according to the recommended CDC/AAP schedule. Meanwhile, I had been on the front lines of vaccine education and awareness, continually partnering with families to protect children. And out of nowhere, measles arrived. It seemed to make a mockery of our efforts.

Measles, literally, came to my backyard.

Months after the successful recovery of my little patients, I was still reminded of my experience with measles. Every vaccine-hesitant parent, every measles-mumps-rubella vaccine, every baby with a rash all brought back a mix of emotions.

In time, however, I was determined that measles would not get the best of me, or my patient families. So, in the summer of 2012, I chose to actively respond to this experience.

For 12 weeks, I told my patient families about Shot@Life. I explained that a $5 donation would allow another child to be protected from measles for life. Just five bucks - and another child would be protected from a vaccine-preventable disease that had made children ill in our own neighborhood. The ihatemeasles project was born.

Throughout the summer, my patient families were overly enthusiastic at the opportunity to help. They proved it by demonstrating outrageous generosity. At the end of 12 weeks, we collected enough money to protect 1,348 children from measles. A grand total of over $6700.

ihatemeasles taught me 3 things:

  1. Many, many parents believe in the amazing protection of vaccines. They actively share the reasons why their own children are vaccinated, and promote that choice to their families and friends. They spend time on Facebook and blogs, correcting misinformation and redirecting to scientific research. They provide resources and tools to vaccine-hesitant friends, encouraging them to make a better decision. They are warriors on the frontlines of playgroups and playgrounds.

  2. Parents understand our global responsibility to protect children against vaccine-preventable disease. In KC, we had a very raw experience with the consequences of a connected, interactive, global community. Our own choices protect our children. In turn, those decisions also help our neighbors, our friends, and our world. Working together to vaccinate the world’s children is a reflection of responsibility, and mutual benefit.

  3. Parents are looking for a way to help. In fact, many families are hungry for a way to provide other children life-saving vaccinations. They want to invest in the health of children all over the world. They want to be able to share the privilege that their own child so easily receives. Maybe part of our job, as vaccine advocates, is simply leading them to that place. 

I am honored to be joining other vaccine advocates at the Shot@Life Champion Summit next month. In D.C, I will meet others who are on the front lines of patient care, social outreach, research, and legislation. We will learn from leaders in vaccine policy and awareness. And will be empowered with ideas for our own communities, and for our Nation’s legislative desks.

Together, we will continue to fight the good fight of vaccine awareness and action. And we will all be more powerful than ever.


POSTED IN: Champions, Parenthood, Partners, Supporters


Submitted by t on: July 5, 2015 The markets are now filled with the tools and essential items of the kitchen also there are websites of Kitchen Products Online that are providing the better services to the general masses and making profit and earn their livelihood with this business as well. Kitchen Products
Submitted by abbasi on: July 5, 2015 such an interesting article here Afatogel.com Bandar Terbesar Situs Togel Online Terpercaya. I was searching for something like that for quite a long time and at last I have found it here. Millionaire Blueprint
Submitted by Anonymous on: July 5, 2015 Entrando en nuestra página, podrás acceder fácilmente a los vehículos disponibles, utilizando nuestro práctico car de búsqueda.blog comments seo
Submitted by scascasc on: July 5, 2015 I feelsc really happy to have seen your webpage and look forward to so many more entertaining times reading here. Thanks once more for all the details.Neuwagenvermittlung
Submitted by Anonymous on: July 5, 2015 A real pleasure to read something like this. I just hope that the magic never ends and you'll keep surprising us! vpn connection
Submitted by Schlüsseldienst Berlin on: July 5, 2015 I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to undertand. Unlike additional blogs I have read which are really not tht good. I also found your posts very interesting. In fact after reading, I had to go show it to my friend and he ejoyed it as well!
Submitted by robinjack on: July 5, 2015 falling. Basketball is difficult, and protean, and changing before our eyes. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Success is not guaranteed. It’s all even tougher than it seems. Clinica Ginefiv
Submitted by dennyfar on: July 4, 2015 I really want to say thank you for the information you have shared. Keep writing these kind of posts and I will be your loyal reader. Thanks again. talking soccer
Submitted by Fume Hood on: July 4, 2015 Thanks for creating nice post. Such a cooling post that is admittedly alright written. will be referring lots of friends regarding this. Keep advisingFume Hood
Submitted by David John on: July 4, 2015 I definitely enjoying every little bit of it. It is a great website and nice share. I want to thank you. Good job! You guys do a great blog, and have some great contents. Keep up the good work. This is my first opportunity to visit this website. I found some interesting things and I will apply to the development of my blog. wordpress
Submitted by talking soccer on: July 4, 2015 Thank you for some other informative website. The place else may just I get that kind of information written in such a perfect method? I have a venture that I am simply now running on, and I’ve been at the glance out for such info.
Submitted by jams123 on: July 4, 2015 So kids know that plumbing is a good career choice and can offer just as many career options as a four-year college degree. WordPress Magazine Themes
Submitted by t on: July 4, 2015 This might work but also remember that it may be a frustrating and very long procedure. Also, try to build Dofollow Blog Comments as it will fetch link juice for your money site. Buy Quality Backlinks
Submitted by Zcode System Opiniones on: July 4, 2015 Place your wager as near at the period of the presentation as feasible. Activities may happen your last minute, individuals could possibly get sprained as well as gambling can make all across providing you, bringing down your main original lines. By acquiring distraction sports betting suggestions through a commercial you will find a higher prospect of success. While you might want to buy sporting events gambling reserve or perhaps a model on the Bets qualified professional, know this kind of gaming techniques begin make spine quite easily. Zcode System Opiniones
Submitted by jack on: July 4, 2015 The event will be followed by a site visit to the CSP plant “El Tesoro”, giving attendees the opportunity not only to see the first CSP operational plant in Latin America, but also to see how a mine operates. more Info
Submitted by muasbhir on: July 4, 2015 You're in point of fact a just right webmaster. The website loading speed is amazing. It kind of feels that you're doing any distinctive trick. Moreover, The contents are masterpiece. you have done a fantastic activity on this subject! lan messenger windows 7
Submitted by popcorn time app on: July 3, 2015 Thanks for sharing the info, keep up the good work going.... I really enjoyed exploring your site. good resource...
Submitted by Moises Aroline on: July 3, 2015 Clash of clans hack tool. Go for it. Give it a try!
Submitted by Difunde on: July 3, 2015 This web page doesn’t show up correctly on my iphone 3gs – you might want to try and repair that. View site
Submitted by Nomadexpediciones on: July 3, 2015 Hello, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of spam remarks? If so how do you protect against it, any plugin or anything you can suggest? I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any support is very much appreciated. viajes fotograficos

Leave a Comment


Enter this word:

In This Section