The agenda of anti-vaccination activists may be causing a drag on the U.S. Economics as the outbreak of people strikes people to stay out of work and seek medical care, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said on Monday.
"If you wind up getting more infections and diseases that were vaccine-preventable, These are completely avoidable burdens on the economy, "Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNBC. "When they get sick, they lose work, they lose their finances from work, [and] they have hospital costs."
There are no official data yet on how this year's measles outbreak ̵
However, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2013 showed that a person hospitalized with measles can run a hospital bill from $ 4,032 to $ 46,060. Additionally, a study by the University of North Carolina showed that vaccine-preventable diseases among adults cost the economy nearly $ 9 billion in 2015, with non-vaccinated individuals responsible for 80% of these costs.
On Friday, President Donald Trump, who was questioned about the safety of vaccines in the past, urged people to get measles shots. Health officials in New York, where the current outbreak is the worst, have declared public health emergencies, and they're scrambling to vaccinate people.
The latest numbers from CDC, released Wednesday, show 695 cases of measles in 22 states.
The calls for action from federal and local officials come amid growing misinformation efforts by anti-vaccination activists, and a vocal fringe who opposes inoculations. They believe, in contrast to the scientific evidence, that ingredients in the vaccine can cause harm to the body.
Fauci, who helped develop a vaccine against AIDS, warned that the measles itself is dangerous and can kill. The disease, before vaccines were available, killed an average of 2 million to 3 million people a year globally, he said. "In the United States, there were about 2 million cases [of measles] and about 500 deaths per year."
"The misinformation that measles is not a serious disease is just not true," Fauci added in the interview on "Squawk Box. "
For more on investing in health-care innovation, click here to join CNBC at our Healthy Returns Summit in New York City on May 21.