Letter: Global vaccine programs

Published: 11/30/2022 7:00:26 AM
Modified: 11/30/2022 7:00:12 AM

As a mother and a grandmother, I’m grateful that my children and my grandchildren, as well as myself, were all able to easily get all the vaccines they needed to be protected from vaccine-preventable diseases like polio and measles. With cases of those diseases on the rise around the globe, I want vaccines to be available to all children both here in our Concord community and worldwide. I was surprised to learn that one in five children around the world still lack access to basic vaccines, according to Shot @ Life. As a result, 1.5 million children die of vaccine-preventable diseases annually. With infectious diseases, a threat anywhere is a threat everywhere. Immunizing children everywhere saves lives abroad and keeps us safer here at home.

Those are two reasons why fully funding global childhood immunization programs is so important and why I advocate for Shot @ Life, a campaign of the UN Foundation devoted to ensuring all children have access to immunizations, regardless of where they live. Funding for global childhood immunization programs makes up a tiny fraction of the U.S. federal budget, a sliver of one percent, but that expenditure has great economic benefits. For every $1 spent on immunizations, the world sees more than $50 in economic benefits. Please contact Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan and Rep. Ann McLane Kuster to tell them you support funding global vaccine programs at the highest levels and hope they do, too.

Mary McGahan



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