The CDC is recognizing National Infant Immunization Week as part of the World Immunization Week, an effort of the World Health Organization.
CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, MD, is urging health care providers to encourage parents, and expectant parents to vaccinate their children.1 The message was issued in a statement today, during National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW).
Redfield said he is wholeheartedly an advocate for infant immunization,1 both as a physician and a family man.
“I have ensured all of my children and grandchildren are vaccinated on the recommend schedule,” Redfield said in his statement.1 “Vaccines are safe. Vaccines do not cause autism. Vaccine-preventable diseases are dangerous.”
The CDC is recognizing NIIW as part of the World Immunization Week (WIW), an effort of the World Health Organization (WHO). NIIW and WIW will continue through May 4.2
According to Redfield, 94% of parents vaccinate their children to protect against measles and other preventable diseases. He said CDC is working to reach vaccine-hesitant individuals with the message that immunization is important.1
“It is imperative that we correct misinformation and reassure fearful parents so that they protect their children from illnesses with long-lasting health impacts. Roughly 1.3%, or 100,000 children, in this country under the age of 2 [years] have not been vaccinated, making them vulnerable to the current measles outbreak,” said Redfield, in his statement.1 "We must join together as a nation to once again eliminate measles and prevent future disease outbreaks."
According to CDC, WIW includes the simultaneous promotion, across 180 WHO member states, of immunization, advancing the equity in the use of vaccines and universal access to vaccination services, and to enable cooperation between countries in their immunization activities.2
Vaccines have drastically reduced infant death and disability caused by preventable diseases in the United States, according to CDC. Infants and children can be protected from 14 vaccine-preventable diseases before the age of 2 years, through immunization.2