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WHO, Global Health Agencies Should Focus Resources On Routine Immunization Coverage Against Multiple Diseases

The Atlantic: Measles Outbreaks Are a Sign of Bigger Problems
Seth Berkley, president and CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance

“…While mass vaccination against a single disease is certainly an effective tool in helping health officials respond to outbreaks, it can also draw attention and resources away from more farsighted efforts to increase routine immunization coverage. As a result, it can inadvertently increase the risk of future outbreaks of measles and other infectious diseases. The elimination of measles, then, may depend on a more sweeping, less targeted strategy. In the remaining five years until 2020, the year that was supposed to mark the total elimination of measles, the WHO and other global health agencies may be more effective if they focus their resources on routine immunizations that boost population immunity against multiple diseases, rather than playing catch-up with just one…” (12/1).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.