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Some Moms Walk 15 Miles To Get Their Child Vaccinated

Some Moms Walk 15 Miles To Get Their Child Vaccinated

 

Written by Chrysula Winegar

A child dies every 20 seconds from a vaccine-preventable disease. Thatís 1.7 million children each year, or nearly half the number of kindergartners enrolled in American schools this year. Gone. This week is World Immunization Week, and I am painfully aware of this statistic.

In the developing world, when a child needs a vaccine, a lot of planning is involved.† Some moms walk 15 miles to reach life-saving vaccines for their children. It makes my 15-minute wait in the pediatricianís office feel like a breeze, even if my three year old is trying to rip pages out of the books or torture the goldfish.

Action around the globe

During World Immunization Week, which runs from April 21-27, millions of children will be vaccinated and immunized through efforts like the Lions Club International’s radio and TV messages that will reach out to thousands of parents and children. The call to the community is going out in a massive way.

Vaccination campaigns are being implemented in Latin America through the Pan American Health Organization, and country-officers of the World Health Organization are planning nationwide and regional campaigns in places including Africa and Asia.

The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunizations (GAVI Alliance) is spearheading a first-ever effort to jointly roll out the rotavirus and pneumococcal vaccine in Ghana. Pneumonia and diarrhea are the biggest killers of children under five, responsible for one-third of child deaths worldwide. Both are vaccine-preventable diseases.

Diseases that we don’t think to worry about in the United States are still causing concern in other parts of the globe. Vaccines can help. Polio has almost been eradicated from the world — dropping by 99 percent in the last 20 years, with only three countries still on the polio endemic list (Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan). Now to get that last 1 percent! Measles still kills more than 150,000 children each year.† Despite the CDC declaring measles eliminated from the USA in 2000, the recent Superbowl outbreak in Indiana reminded us that borders are completely porous where contagious viruses are concerned. Both polio and measles can be prevented by vaccines.

What can we do to help?

Instead of walking 15 miles to get to a vaccination station, you can spend 15 minutes or less each day to help spread the word about the Shot@Life campaign and the importance of global vaccines to give every child a shot at a healthy life.

Think you canít help solve the worldís problems? Think again. Find your To Do list for the week here! Shot@Life aims to raise awareness, action and money right here at home, for the cause of global vaccinations.

Youíll find a daily list of quick actions to help reach the 1 in 5 children around the world who do not have access to life-saving immunizations. Iíd say thatís worth 15 minutes of our time.

Because every child deserves a shot at childhood.

 

Related Stories:

Indian Marks Major Milestone in Global Fight to Eradicate Polio

GlaxoSmithKline Fined Over Irregularities in Pediatric Vaccine Trials

Doctors “Firing” Patients Who Request Alternate Vaccination Schedules

 

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Photo from UNICEF Sverige via flickr

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41 comments

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7:17PM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

these moms are inspiring!!!!

4:29PM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

People research the facts first before buying into any propaganda...

2:34PM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

I'm glad to see that some moms are so dedicated, but I'm saddened that vaccines aren't readily available world wide, though it is a fact I was already aware of. I'll do my best to donate to these organizations. For those interested, a great site is givevaccines.org, where you can answer trivia questions in order to donate vaccines for free!

7:54AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

I respect these women very much, they walk so far for their child; to help them. :)

7:14AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Thanks for sharing

6:49AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

thanks for this posting

6:46AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

To all the people saying that vaccines can cause autism: NO. No, they do NOT. I am autistic. Autism is a PRE-BIRTH neurological condition. Getting a shot and having an allergic reaction to it cannot cause your brain to spontaniously rewire itself - and I find the fact you want something to blame autism on disgusting. Sit down, shut up and save lives.

4:16AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Beth is right - it is Rotary that has carried the burden & done an amazing job. Vaccinations have indeed saved thousands of lives.

3:15AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Thanks.

3:14AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Thanks.

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