Immunizations are vital

08/10/2014 7:00 PM

08/08/2014 5:30 PM

Corrine Soldhein’s July 30 Other Views article, Children should get their vaccines, was informative. I was impressed by the fact that a University of Miami medical student “gets it” and hopeful that this next generation will do the right thing and take care of the world’s poorest children.

When my kids were young, their childhood immunizations were a routine part of growing up. Their pediatrician’s office would let me know what vaccines were needed and when they were due and if our insurance covered the cost.

I never thought twice about it. However I did appreciate that because of these vaccines, many childhood diseases were a thing of the past.

I cannot imagine the angst of a young mother in a third-world country whose child has no access to these same vaccines that we in this country take for granted. To see your child die of a disease that is 100 percent avoidable and preventable is unfathomable.

GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations) is a public-private global health partnership committed to increasing access to immunization in poor countries. Its goal is to vaccinate 300 million children and increase the percentage of fully vaccinated children from 5 percent to 50 percent. We need to urge our representatives to sign on to the GAVI reolutions and support this five-year goal.

As our children are getting immunized to start school in a few weeks, let’s remember the children who not only will not be protected against disease, but do not even have a school to attend. Let’s share the wealth.

Laurie Suarez, Miami

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