Autism Speaks organization wants parents to vaccinate - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Autism Speaks organization wants parents to vaccinate

CAPE GIRARDEAU COUNTY, MO (KFVS) - The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that more 100 people in 14 states have the measles.

So far, the only state in the Heartland with reported cases is Illinois.

Health officials say more cases are likely.

The problem gives rise to the debate on whether vaccinations should be a choice.

Now a well-known group, Autism Speaks, is speaking out and urging parents to get the vaccine.

Autism Speaks is an organization at the forefront of finding the cause of the disease. They released an important message during this measles outbreak.

The group claims vaccines are not linked to autism and is urging parents to get their vaccinations.

Jeremy Ferguson and his wife chose to vaccinate their five kids.

"The risks involved with maybe some of the things that can happen with vaccinations that go bad did outweigh the good of getting a vaccination done properly,” said Ferguson. Even though Ferguson could have opted out.

Missouri is one of 20 states that let parents decide.

"Now we have other people's children put at risk. And that's a real shame out of this whole controversy,” said Diana Rogers-Adkinson who works with kids with Autism. She is applauding Autism Speaks for helping debunk the myth that vaccines do more harm than good.

"When you start eliminating the use of our medical science, it never really helps our children get better,” she said.

Health officials have been quick to point to the anti-vaccine movement is a factor for the outbreak.

The CDC reports the majority of the people who got measles were unvaccinated.

Ferguson still thinks the decision should be made by the parents.

"It's a tough question but I think at this point parents should have a right to choose,” he said.

The U.S. saw a record number of measles cases during 2014 with 644 cases in 27 states.

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