Chickenpox : A Contagious Communicable Disease

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Chickenpox (Varicella)
Ashley Ko
Towson University

Chickenpox (varicella) is a highly contagious communicable disease, which is caused by the varicella-zoster virus. Chickenpox causes an itchy blister or rash all over one’s body. Chickenpox can be dangerous especially in babies, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems. Chickenpox is usually not a serious problem in healthy children, and if a child develops Chickenpox, they should stay home to prevent from contaminating other people. Chickenpox was more common in the U.S. during the early 1990s, but following the first Chickenpox vaccination in the U.S. in the year 1995, there was a gradual decline of the amount of diagnosis for Chickenpox (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012). In 1995, when the Chickenpox vaccine was first introduced, there were 120,624 cases and 115 deaths that year. According to Marin, Zhang, and Seward, authors of Near Elimination of Varicella Deaths in the US After Implementation of the Vaccination Program, during 2005-2007, compared to 1990-1994, the age-specific mortality rates declined by 97%, per million population among children and adolescents (2011). For every year after 1995, there has been a tremendous decline of deaths from Chickenpox, and an increase in Chickenpox vaccination rates. Once availability of Chickenpox vaccination became accessible in the U.S., more than 3.5 million cases of varicella, 9,000 hospitalizations, and 100
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