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Chicken Pox-infected Lollipops Via Mail

By Danielle Sullivan |

chicken pox parties, chicken pox lollipops, varicella vaccination, inoculation chicken pox, facebook page chicken pox lollipops

It brings a whole new meaning to sealed with a kiss.

You may have heard that parents began to host chicken pox parties a couple of years ago. The parties are hosted by a mom whose child has the disease in its active stage. Nearby moms bring their unvaccinated kids to the party in the hopes that they will contract the disease, thus avoiding the Varicella inoculation while also gaining immunity. It sounds like a strange version of Survivor tot version, but wait…it gets worse.

Were these chicken pox parties odd? Yeah, kinda. Creepy? Without a doubt. But they weren’t against the law.

However, the latest way to infect your child with the disease is illegal, not to mention gross.

MSNBC reports that a Nashville woman was found selling infected lollipops for $50 each on a chicken pox party Facebook page, then shipping them to moms who lived too far away to attend a real-life chicken pox party. The Facebook page called “Find a Pox Party in Your Area” was “helping to arrange shipments of contaminated objects—jammies, blankets, suckers.”

Wendy Werkit of Nashville offered a “fresh batch of pox in Nashville shipping of suckers, spit and Q-tips available tomorrow 50 dollars via PayPal.”

Nashville federal prosecutor Jerry Martin warned parents not to try it, telling the Associated Press, “It’s illegal and unsafe.” After a Nashville TV station ran the story, a warning immediately went up on the Facebook page:

“The mailing of infectious items, such as lollipops, rags, etc., is a federal offense. This page is not private and can been seen by members and non-members alike. You may post on the page that you have the pox and are willing to share but please keep your specifics in private messages between members. We are all intelligent adults but these guidelines will help protect your privacy. If you’d like to go back and delete your posts about mailing, feel free to do so.”

There is no way to tell if a lollipop licked by a kid hundreds of miles away will actually cause a child to come down with chicken pox if she licks the very same pop, but she could theoretically acquire a few of the other germs the child had. What parent in their right mind would pay to do that? It’s one thing to take a stance against vaccinations and opt not to vaccinate your own child. That’s your business, but to send or purchase germs through the mail is wrong on so many levels, and illegal.

The Facebook posts specifically selling infected lollipops have since been taken down and the page itself claims that it will soon be deleted. Yet considering how many parents are willing to go to this extreme might just mean that the parents have resorted to spreading the word of the disease the old fashioned way…through email.

Image: Stockxchng


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About Danielle Sullivan


Danielle Sullivan

Danielle Sullivan writes for Babble Pets. She is also an award-winning parenting writer, who authors a monthly column for NY Parenting and ASPCA Parents blog. You can read more of her work at her blog,Some Puppy To Love. Read bio and latest posts → Read Danielle's latest posts →

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20 thoughts on “Chicken Pox-infected Lollipops Via Mail

  1. Dina says:

    This is absurd and disgusting! Wow! Have we seen everything yet??!!

  2. Meagan says:

    I am entirely pro-vaccine, I think avoiding the chicken pox vaccine is a not great idea, but I don’t fine chicken pox parties odd or creepy. My mother got chicken pox in college and my aunt got it last year… at the age of 56. NOT FUN. I had a friend growing up who’s mom got it when she was pregnant with his little brother. In the days before the vaccine, the parties were a smart way to protect against that. Now they strike me as misguided, but far from “creepy.”

    Lollipops though, yeah, gross. And probably ineffective.

  3. Richan says:

    When I was little I got the chicken pox and all my cousins came over to get it too lol. That was before the vaccine of course, I’m getting my son vaccinated.

  4. Shelia says:

    The page has not been taken down, nor will it be. I was there last night. My family has had the chicken pox and we are all still alive.

  5. Danielle Sullivan says:

    @Shelia The page hasn’t been taken down yet but a post on the site says it will soon be: “This page is going to soon be deleted due to ignorant people not doing their research and sticking their nose where it doesn’t belong. I will be making a pox party database, and anytime we are informed of chicken pox in your area, you will get an e-mail.”

  6. Blue says:

    Pox party=whatev, fine.
    Infected lollies=eew.

  7. Diera says:

    @Shelia: You’re still alive, but you’re going to carry the chicken pox virus with you for the rest of your life. I have a friend whose mother died of varicella encephalitis later in life. That was an extremely rare outcome, but shingles aren’t rare and they’re reportedly really painful. I had the chicken pox as a kid and of course I survived too, but I’m glad my kids aren’t going to have the virus for life.

  8. Alison says:

    @Diera – I’m pretty pro-vaccine and will give my LO the chicken pox vaccine, however she will have it for life, just as you will (and just as I have). That is how the vaccine works – by putting the virus in your system, hopefully for life to strengthen your immunity to it. That is how many vaccines work.

  9. Nadia says:

    Wow, that is nasty. It gives me the heebie jeebies! Infected lollie pops? Really?

  10. Leyla says:

    the lollipop idea is gross and dangerous…..pox parties it works ….the vax….doesn’t always work but mostly does its job

  11. Erica says:

    @ Alison wow, are you ever misinformed (or naive?). Vaccines typically do not last for a lifetime, nor do that have a 100% effective rate. In the case of the chicken pox vaccine, you can still contract the virus if vaccinated, but it does not completely protect from the disease (any doctor will tell you this). However, when contracted naturally, you are indeed immune. If you do research on vaccines you will understand the many problems with them, and perhaps you will understand why so many of us are choosing to forego vaccinating our children. The more you research, the more you are wary of them.
    Meanwhile, vaccines do cause health issues. A documentary just came out about this: Please check it out.

    BTW, to the writer of this article: you are referencing the wrong FB page. It has already been deleted and the one you link to is NOT the one in the news. Please check facts, thanks!

  12. bob says:

    I can always count on this place to make me feel better about myself.

  13. Sanriobaby =^.^= says:

    Please send this woman to jail! It’s one thing to have these parties w/the intention of passing along chicken pox to the kids, who’s parents agree to the exposure, but it’s another thing to intentionally pass these gross lollipops in the mail, possibly infecting others who have to handle these infected packages unknowingly.

  14. Addie says:

    Do you read the side effects and warnings on the pages the doctor’s office gives you to sign before giving your child a vaccine? And those are the side effects they admit to. There is a reason they make parents/guardians sign the waivers.

  15. Linda, t.o.o. says:

    All three of my kids have had the chicken pox vaccine (the younger two have had 2 doses) and 2 of the 3 got the chicken pox anyway. At least now I can be pretty sure that other child is immune since he’s had 2 exposures. We’ve had people stop by and try to catch the pox from us, but it’s never worked.

  16. Linda, t.o.o. says:

    @Diera, you have a point about the shingles. My husband had shingles in the nerves of his eye and it was the most horrible thing ever. He was literally screaming in pain after taking the maximum amount of vicodin he could. He ended up on Oxycontin, then Neurontin for several years after. He said the pain was like someone was stabbing him in the eye with white hot sword. I also could have blinded him in that eye.

  17. Amanda says:

    i think alot of times it depends on the kid as to whether or not the vaccine will work….for example i had the measels mumps and rubella vaccine as a child and still got the mumps….but still none the less im getting my son vaccinated

  18. LT says:

    The woman who is responsible is just ignorant, and downright cocky about what she is doing.
    The vaccines have been given to millions, worldwide…and are safe and effective. There are some who would get a reation, but very slight. However, this woman SAYS she is sending contaminated candy to others, like the small pox blankets they gave the Native Americans!
    This woman admits _ without saying it_ that she is attempting to practice medicine without a license, and thereby is a danger to others.
    Please arrest her and anyone she sent this “candy” to. Please protect the children. Who knowa what else in on or in that candy. What parent would willing do this?
    Another reason NOT to send your child Trick or Treating by themselves. You never know what the crazies can give your kids.

  19. LT says:

    =Actually the more I read this story and read about the greedy parents who want their children to be sick, the more I realize how horrible some parents just are.
    The degree of illness your child may encounter may not be the same as others with the same virus, due to immunity.
    However, to wish illness on your child is just sick….
    My sister and were very ill from the measles. Thank goodness for the vaccines.

  20. Voice of Reason says:

    My understanding is that no one knows for sure whether the chicken pox vaccine will actually stave off shingles, which I know from my husband’s experience can be truly awful.
    This is just from Wikipedia, but it summarizes what I understood to be the British stance on the varicella vaccine when I lived there:
    “In the UK, varicella antibodies are measured as part of the routine of prenatal care, and by 2005 all National Health Service personnel had determined their immunity and been immunized if they were non-immune and have direct patient contact.
    Population-based immunization against varicella is not otherwise practiced in the UK. It is feared that there would be a greater number of cases of shingles in adults, until the vaccination was given to the entire population—because adults who have had chickenpox as a child are less likely to have shingles in later life if they have been exposed occasionally to the chickenpox virus (for example by their children). This is because the exposure acts as a booster vaccine.”

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