Childhood Immunizations

HRD-93-12R: Published: Feb 8, 1993. Publicly Released: Feb 18, 1993.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on: (1) the federal government's efforts to collect and analyze data on immunization rates during the 1980s and its current efforts; (2) the reasons for any changes in federal policy to collect childhood immunization data; and (3) the effects of such changes. GAO noted that: (1) from 1962 through 1985, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) published national immunization data obtained through its annual United States Immunization Survey; (2) CDC discontinued the survey in 1986 for budgetary reasons; (3) most states did not collect data on statewide immunization levels, and for those that did, the data were not uniformly collected and could not be aggregated nationally; (4) CDC did not issue mandatory guidelines to correct this problem until 1991; (5) CDC determined that its national immunization strategy had to be focused on the preschool population; (6) CDC considers state data to be important so that it can assess individual state initiatives and target resources to states with problems; and (7) CDC requires grantees to report on immunization levels for specific groups.

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