Combination Vaccines are Key to Achieving Complete On-Time Childhood Immunization Coverage
Pediatric vaccination programs have dramatically reduced the morbidity and mortality of infectious diseases , but timeliness remains an important barrier to full realization of the potential health benefits. Recent data suggest that 1 in 3 children in the United States are undervaccinated for more than 6 months , a delay that can raise the risk of infection both for the child and for community members with whom the child comes in contact. Of the factors contributing to undervaccination, the complexity inherent to multiple schedules for multiple vaccines may be one of the most challenging. A number of combination vaccines have already been introduced to simplify immunization schedules, but further progress in this direction is warranted. With several promising new vaccines nearing clinical application, combination vaccines will play an even more critical role in maintaining children on schedule to achieve the full benefits of this approach to disease prevention.
Keywords: Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, measles immunization, Haemophilus influenzae, Vaccination, pertussis
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