Health

‘Severe Immunization Crisis’: Millions Of Children Are Not Getting Routine Vaccinations This Year, Data Shows

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Millions of children missed routine vaccinations this year amid the coronavirus, according to a Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) press release.

The BCBSA projected around 9 million vaccination doses for measles, mumps & rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus & acellular pertussis (DTaP) and polio, could be missed by the end of 2020, according to the data. Forty percent of “parents and guardians” cited coronavirus as the reason their children didn’t get vaccinated.

“The U.S. is on the precipice of a severe immunization crisis among children,” Dr. Vincent Nelson, chief medical officer at the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association said, according to the press release.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly interrupted adherence to vaccination schedules, and the possibility that preventable diseases, like polio, could become a threat to public health once again is particularly concerning,” Nelson continued. (RELATED: Children Rarely Spread Coronavirus To Each Other, Adults, Multiple Studies Show)

Of the projected number of “missed vaccinations,” polio accounted for 38%, DTaP for 25% and MMR for 36%, according to the data. The numbers of people getting vaccinated declined especially around “March through May” and in August, the press release said.

The first period of decline was due to the coronavirus spreading, while August’s decline has been attributed to coronavirus and online learning, the press release said, citing the data.

The BCBSA warned if people don’t get these vaccines, “communities are at risk of seeing outbreaks of childhood diseases like measles and whooping cough.”

Maintaining habitual check-ups and people getting the vaccines they skipped is important to protect children and people against “these highly contagious diseases, Nelson said in a statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“Family physicians, pediatricians and community health centers are well prepared and are taking measures to ensure their offices are safe. We urge parents to ensure all childhood vaccinations are up to date,” Nelson continued.

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