Katie O'Brien
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Federal Budget Cuts to Immunizations in Wake of Measles Outbreak

Image Credit: Flickr

Federal cuts to vaccinations may come sooner than expected, according to CNN. Released Monday, the new federal budget proposes a cut to the 317 immunization program. In effect since October 2012, the specific section of the Public Health Service Act grants under- and uninsured children, adolescents and adults free immunizations.

The cut will reduce the program’s budget, under the Department of Health and Human Services, by $50 million, CNN reported. At the same time, the budget changes add $128 million to the Vaccines for Children program along with the hope that more adults will have less expensive access to immunizations through the Affordable Care Act.

This budget change comes in the wake of a measles outbreak across 14 states, coupled with the “anti-vax” movement surfacing on different websites and Internet forums at a higher momentum recently. 

Vactruth.com, a website providing information and materials seeking information about vaccines published an article titled “9 Ways to Boost Your Confidence When Your Doctor Pressures You to Vaccinate.”

“I’ve heard it called by lots of names: mother’s intuition, motherly instinct, sixth sense, subconscious mind, trusting your gut. Whatever you call it, listen to it,” blogger Missy Fluegge wrote. “ There are so many times when we have that ‘gut feeling’ about something, and we realize later that we were right. If vaccinating you child doesn’t feel ‘right,’ trust your instinct.”

However, the CDC encourages the immunization of children as a matter of public health.

“We don’t vaccinate just to protect our children. We also vaccinate to protect our grandchildren and their grandchildren. With one disease, smallpox, we ‘stopped the leak’ in the boat by eradicating the disease,” the CDC website reads. “Our children don’t have to get smallpox shots anymore because the disease no longer exists.”