MARATHON COUNTY (WAOW) — State health officials are pushing a new program aimed at encouraging parents to get their children immunized, especially with recent Measles outbreaks happening from coast to coast.
Wisconsin’s Department of Health Service officials want to renew the importance of vaccinations before something similar happens in our backyard.
The campaign is focused on parents of infants to three-year-old children. Although Measles continue to dominate conversations, immunizations protect children from 14 different serious illnesses ranging from Polio to Tetanus.
In 2018, Wisconsin had a series vaccination rate of 72%, according to data from the Wisconsin DHS, but are striving for perfection.
And with various conflicting information on vaccines, it is important to speak with a health care provider.
“Feel comfortable asking questions, I think that’s a normal part of being involved in your health care…and looking for reliable resources,” said Becky Mroczenski, R.N., B.S.N. Communicable Disease Manager for Marathon County.
We don’t often see the effects of preventable diseases in central Wisconsin, but experts say they’re very real and not far from home.
“They do exist, they are out there. They’re only a plane ride away, and in some cases, a car ride away. With the fact that we have had bordering states have cases of measles,” said Mroczenski.
In central Wisconsin, there are high rates of vaccination rates in some counties, and lower in others. But bordering counties can have stark differences.
Marathon County has a 78% vaccination rate, and Clark County has a 44% rate according to data from Wisconsin DHS.
In Western Wisconsin, La Crosse County has a 78% rate according to DHS. Other counties include Jackson at 66%, Monroe at 62%, Trempealeau 72% and Vernon at 48%.