Childhood Immunizations

Why haven't millions of youngsters gotten all their shots?


Vaccinations can prevent many childhood diseases that once killed or permanently injured thousands of youngsters every year. But in the United States today, millions of preschool-aged children have not received all of the recommended immunizations against such scourges as polio, diphtheria, whooping cough and measles. To close the immunization gap, President Clinton in February outlined a plan to provide free vaccinations to more children and help public health agencies improve outreach. But Clinton's plan carried a hefty price tag. It also came under fire from vaccine manufacturers, who disputed the president's contention that they were to blame for the increased cost of immunizations. Clinton cut back on his plan for universal vaccine distribution, and now Congress is considering other changes before taking final action on ...

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