A heated debate over vaccinations has sparked controversy after 36 students at a North Carolina school contracted the chickenpox as of Monday.

CNN reports, the outbreak at Asheville Waldorf School is a cause of real concern for people in the state because 110 of the 152 students who attended the school do not have the chickenpox vaccine.

Asheville Waldorf, which enrolls children from nursery through sixth grade, has the highest number of religious vaccination exemptions in North Carolina. And health officials have warned that the outbreak is concerning.

Screenshot/NBC News

Some in the community, however, have expressed a mixed reaction to the varicella virus known as chickenpox.

According to the Associated Press, it’s the largest outbreak in the state since the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) required vaccinations for all children attending school starting in 1995.

The state only permits both religious and medical exemptions.

On Facebook, some were quick to blame anti-vaxxers for the spread of the virus at Asheville Waldorf’s campus. Commenters wrote:

They need to have a school just for anti-vaxxers.

Shame on anti-vaxxers…

However, others said chickenpox is nothing more than a harmless childhood illness. Commenters responding to the criticism wrote:

It’s just chicken pox for christ sakes, little kids are SUPPOSED to get chicken pox. Calm … down NC.

When I was a kid everyone got Chicken Pox… we all survived LOL

Since when did chicken pox become the new black plague?? how many of you on here complaining have had chicken pox and survived??

According to healthcare providers, while in most cases the highly contagious viral infection that causes an itchy rash isn’t typically life-threatening, the virus could cause hospitalization in rare cases.

Screenshot/NBC News

Dr. Jennifer Mullendore of Buncombe County Department of Health and Human Services told the Asheville Citizen-Times:

“People don’t think it’s a serious disease, and for the majority of people it’s not. But it’s not that way for everybody.”

She explained that out of every 1,000 children infected with chickenpox, two to three required care in a hospital at various stages of the rash. Mullendore added:

“To me, that’s not a mild disease, and if you’re the parent of one of those children, you probably don’t think so either.”

Asheville Waldorf School officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Tiffani is a writer for Dearly. She is from New York City. Prior to working for Dearly she covered fashion news and managed social media for various digital media outlets.

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11 Replies to “Chickenpox Outbreak Hits School Where 110 out of 152 Students Are Unvaccinated”

  • Andrew Boosinger 2 years ago

    Why would the parents of children who have been vaccinated even give it a second thought, their children are not at risk. Isn’t that the point of your children being vaccinated?? In the 1970’s, 1 in 100,000 children had autism, today it’s 1 in 35. What has changed to cause this, aside from the number of vaccines went from about 5 then, to over 30 given now. That spike only happened when a law was passed that insulated big pharma from vacation injurie lawsuits. They made $150 million then, to $60 billion for big pharma now! 400 times more money going to big pharma, with no liability!

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      autism wasn’t as “prevalent” in the past most likely because people weren’t aware of the condition until as of the recent decade or two ago. so it makes sense that older people who may qualify today to fall under the spectrum may not even know they have it, and has since been underreported. People didn’t know much about it until It was sensationalized by the antivaxxer movement. I still don’t understand it. The one article that started all this mess has since been debunked, the doctor who wrote it has recanted his statement on the relationship between the disorder and the vaccine, officially stating there is NO correlation between the 2. He has since also lost his license. Numerous other well documented studies and reputable sources have shown that there IS NO correlation between the 2 things as well. It blows my mind that there are still so many uninformed groups of people even well-educated healthcare professionals who still support this BS and are putting so many innocent lives at risk

      • Anonymous 2 years ago

        My question over the last 25 years has been ‘why aren’t they testing the parents of the children with Autism, especially following the 1972 CHANGE in vaccinations?’

      • Anonymous 2 years ago

        ok so you are just making stuff up Autism has been around since the 1940’s my 50 plus year old cousin has severe autism I personally don’t feel that with all the carcinogens in everything we consume that I want a catalyst like an unknown chemical injected in my kids… that being said I was vaccinated I did not get chicken pox when I was a child I did however get it at 28 and almost died from it because i was already suffering from pneumonia which I developed from bronchitis shortly after I got the last flu shot I will ever get. I was in the hospital for a week did I freak out that I caught the pox from an un-vaccinated child, no I did not I respect that it is a parents right to choose if your vaccines are so great then you and your child have nothing to worry about, but if they aren’t what they say, if they slip other things in to “test” on live patients then you’re all screwed. I rather err on the side of caution.

      • Anonymous 2 years ago

        also even the movie rainman is 30 years old which was about a grown man who was autistic… just saying …

      • Gail 2 years ago

        It wasn’t prevalent because it wasn’t there. The Amish do not vaccinate. They still have no autism.

  • Mother of two 2 years ago

    Chickenpox by itself is not that bad but after you’ve had chickenpox later in life you are very likely to develop shingles as that is just dormant chicken pox.
    Shingles are VERY painful and sometimes life threatening. This is why the vaccine was made in the first place.

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    The irony of this is, since the vaccine the number of young adults and mid age adults who have gotten shingles has increased dramatically. When i grew up maybe lne or 2 adults had shingles. Now almost everyone i know from age 30-60 has had shingles. I believe the vaccine is the cause of the uptick.

    • Cindi Setzer 2 years ago

      You do realize that people from the age of 30 to 60 have most likely not been vaccinated against chicken pox. They grew up in the generation that believed in letting your kids get the illness. Everyone I know who has had shingles was never vaccinated for chicken pox. My son is 27 and didn’t get the vaccine until he went into the military because he never caught the illness. So I really doubt the rise in shingles is in any way related to the vaccine.

      • Gail 2 years ago

        It’s not that my parents didn’t believe in vaccinations; it’s that there were no vaccinations, and we survived with fewer allergies too. And I knew no one who had autism.

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