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Immigration officials have added COVID-19 to the list of illnesses requiring vaccinations, including polio, measles, mumps and hepatitis.

Immigrants to the U.S. seeking permanent residency are now are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 under a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services policy update that took effect Friday. Read more»

When the vaccines become available to the general public, will enough people get it in your county, city or neighborhood to keep your community safe? Data on childhood vaccines, such as the one that protects against measles, mumps and rubella, provide hints. Read more»

A machine at the UW Medicine Virology laboratory in Seattle extracts genetic material called RNA from patient samples to allow the analysis of potential COVID-19 cases on March 11.

After a slow start, testing for COVID-19 has ramped up in recent weeks, with giant commercial labs jumping into the effort, drive-up testing sites established in some places and new types of tests approved under emergency rules set by the Food and Drug Administration. Read more»

Alicia Wheeler, an immigration attorney in Phoenix, is pictured. A new rule from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement requires attorneys to bring their own personal protective equipment to attend hearings and visit clients inside immigration detention facilities.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement is turning away Arizona lawyers from immigration detention centers if they don’t comply with a new agency requirement to bring their own nitrile gloves, surgical mask or N95 respirators, and eye protection. Read more»

Lawyers and advocates who work with detainees say ICE detention centers are breeding grounds for infectious diseases, and the agency’s medical facilities have been harshly criticized by inspectors and human rights organizations.

ICE has suspended social visits to detention centers and begun screening newly arrived detainees for symptoms. But inside, detainees said, little else has changed in response to the virus. Read more»

Increased testing for coronavirus – Arizona officials can check up to 450 samples daily – could reveal more diagnoses, according to Dr. Cara Christ, who heads the Arizona Department of Health Services. But that is to be expected, she cautioned, and doesn’t necessarily mean coronavirus is worsening. Also, several samples can come from one person.

Arizona health officials have the go-ahead to test at the state level for coronavirus cases and are awaiting test results for a second potential case of COVID-19, a novel disease that has sickened nearly 89,000 worldwide and killed six in the U.S., public health officials said Monday. Read more»

Monterey, Calif., mother Kelley Watson Snyder, 38, poses with her two children, Jaylen, 9, and Kira, 5. Over time, she changed her opinion on vaccinations for her children, converting from an anti-vaxxer to an ardent proponent of vaccines who runs a pro-vaccination Facebook page.

Amid the contentious dispute over immunization requirements for children, Kelley Watson Snyder stands out: She has been both a recalcitrant skeptic and an ardent proponent of childhood vaccines. Read more»

Measles vaccine being adminstered in Arizona

Across the nation, public health departments are redirecting scarce resources to try to control the spread of measles. Their success relies on shoe-leather detective work that is one of the great untold costs of the measles resurgence. Read more»

Health officials warn that vaccination rates are deteriorating across Arizona, risking public health as parents continue to opt out of immunizations. Read more»

This photo from the 1960s shows a child with measles. Vaccinations have largely controlled measles and many other diseases, but recent cases and exposures in Arizona have put those who aren’t vaccinated at risk.

A visitor to Tucson may have exposed the public to an active case of measles at Tucson International Airport on Monday, officials warned. Read more»

The kindergarten immunization rate for measles, mumps and rubella fell to 93 percent this year – below the threshold needed to provide herd immunity from the spread of diseases.

The Arizona Department of Health Services issued a report warning that increased exemptions from vaccines are putting the state at risk this year for an outbreak of measles, mumps and other preventable diseases. Read more»

Measles is a disease that is roaring back in the U.S. after being nearly wiped out. In a country like Guinea, where this child was photographed in 2009, it is often fatal.

Some people believe measles is a benign, childhood disease that causes a bit of a rash. But the disease is one nasty "little bag of destruction" that will thrive in naive populations — and it's back with a vengeance. Read more»

A recent study identified Phoenix as a “hotspot” for potential disease outbreak because of the high rate of parents who opt out of vaccinating their children. Read more»

Dr. Yamini Goswami, public health medical director of Yavapai County Community Health Services, said families with higher incomes and children in charter or private schools have higher personal-beliefs exemption rates than any other demographic group in Yavapai County.

The rising number of parents opting out of vaccinating their children is a concern around the state, but particularly in Yavapai County, which has Arizona's second-lowest rate of measles, mumps and rubella vaccination among kindergartners. Read more» 1

Last week the Legislature voted to move forward a bill banning red-light camera ban, a Senate committee voted to move forward a bill banning driver's from texting, and Democrats took to social media to urge fellow legislators to prioritize schools rather than prisons after Governor Ducey’s budget proposal. Read more» 1

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