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Study reveals gaps in vaccine financing for underinsured children

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Editorial: Reasons and Remedies for Underinsurance for Child and Adolescent Vaccines

In an accompanying editorial, Matthew M. Davis, M.D., M.A.P.P., of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, comments on the study by Lee and colleagues.

Strong proponents of immunization will likely object to the concept of universally recommended vaccines ranked on their relative merits. Nonetheless, that position fails to acknowledge the implicit prioritization of recommended vaccines that is already occurring at the state level, as illustrated by the findings by Lee et al. Rather than continuing a program in which de facto prioritization creates inconsistencies across states that are difficult for the public to understand, the public health and medical communities may benefit from making prioritization of vaccines more explicit and consistent.

The process of explicit prioritization is challenging in the public sector, as witnessed in recent years during shortages of influenza vaccine. However, the lists of priority populations that emerged through evidence-based deliberations about the burden of influenza illness have improved the influenza immunization effort by clarifying steps to take in case of vaccine supply shortage. Explicit prioritization of financing for newly recommended vaccines, as a remedy for shortfalls in financing for underinsured children, cannot be far behind.

(JAMA. 2007;298(6):680-682. Available pre-embargo to the media at www.jamamedia.org)

Editors Note: Please see the article for additional information, including other affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.


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Contact: Judith Montminy
617-432-0442
JAMA and Archives Journals
7-Aug-2007


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