HomeFlorida NewsGov. DeSantis claims Floridians are restoring their trust in health policies under...

Gov. DeSantis claims Floridians are restoring their trust in health policies under his leadership as Florida successfully controls measles outbreak


The Florida Department of Health has recently shared insights on the ongoing measles outbreak in southeast Florida, a situation that has stirred considerable attention both locally and nationwide. As of January 2024, measles cases have been reported in sixteen states, including California, New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Washington, Indiana, and Arizona. However, Florida’s cases have been spotlighted, often for reasons more political than health-related, according to the Department’s latest press release.

Check also: Surgeon General’s controversial advice on measles isolation raises concerns in Florida

A Stand for Public Health and Personal Responsibility

The press release underscores Florida’s distinctive stance on managing public health crises, particularly under the governance of Ron DeSantis. The state has been praised for its evidence-based leadership and approach to public health, which emphasizes personal responsibility and parental rights. Governor DeSantis said, “Once again, Florida has shown that good public health policy includes personal responsibility and parents’ rights. While the national medical health establishment and media have lost the public’s confidence, Florida continues to restore sanity and reason to public health, and will always do so under my leadership.”

State Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo added that Florida’s public health leadership is committed to making informed decisions that respect individual freedoms while promoting the community’s health. Under DeSantis’s leadership, Ladapo pledges to prioritize a comprehensive approach to health that listens to Floridians’ needs and ignores the surrounding “noise.”

Gov. DeSantis claims Floridians are restoring their trust in health policies as Florida successfully controls measles outbreak

Addressing the Measles Outbreak

The focus of the outbreak has been Manatee Bay Elementary, where initial cases were reported. The Florida Department of Health in Broward County acted swiftly, notifying the community and investigating the situation. By February 18, 2024, parents and guardians were informed of the outbreak and given guidance on how to proceed. Notably, Dr. Ladapo’s message to the parents on February 20 stressed the importance of weighing the high immunity rates against the educational costs of keeping healthy children at home. He stated, “Because of the high likelihood of infection, it is normally recommended that children stay home until the end of the infectious period, which is currently March 7, 2024. However, due to the high immunity rate in the community, as well as the burden on families and educational cost of healthy children missing school, DOH is deferring to parents or guardians to make decisions about school attendance.”

Check also: Healthcare innovation takes center stage in Florida with new council and lending program, better health care system in Florida

This approach reflects Florida’s commitment to empowering families, promoting an understanding that individuals with a history of vaccination or prior infection have a 98% protection rate against measles. The state’s balanced recommendations have successfully navigated the fine line between ensuring public safety and maintaining individual liberty without resorting to forced isolation or overbearing government measures.

As of February 16, 2024, no new measles cases have been reported at Manatee Bay Elementary, marking the end of the 21-day infection period. Nevertheless, due to the highly contagious nature of measles and frequent international travel, Florida remains vigilant for potential sporadic cases. The state’s consistent strategy for handling such health challenges emphasizes its dedication to a policy that respects personal choice and community well-being, setting a precedent for managing future public health issues.

Read more