For those who would find this interesting, here is a snippet:
Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr
Many family physicians may be surprised to learn that the recommended immunization schedule for children and adolescents is in early adulthood (at age 25). The first childhood immunization schedule was released in 19831 and provided guidance to physicians as to which of the four vaccines recommended at the time (i.e., diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and pertussis [DTP], oral poliovirus vaccine [OPV], measles, mumps, and rubella [MMR], and tetanus and diphtheria toxoid [Td]) to administer at each of seven age ranges (i.e., two, four, six, 15, and 18 months, four to six years, and 14 to 16 years). All told, a child born in 1983 would receive 11 vaccine doses between birth and 18 years of age.
In 1995 the schedule became “harmonized,” gaining endorsement from three sponsoring organizations: the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP; http://www.cdc.gov/nip/acip), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP; http://www.aap.org), and the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP; http://www.aafp.org). As part of this arrangement, the schedule is now published simultaneously during January in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Pediatrics, and American Family Physician.
The recommended schedule continues to provide guidance to busy physicians. Today, American children receive 39 recommended vaccine doses by age 18, a 3.5-fold increase over the past 25 years. This explosion of antigens has been associated with a 6.3-fold increase in vaccination-related costs. The estimated 1983 private market cost for one child to receive all recommended vaccines was $254 (adjusted to present day, excluding administrative costs); this amount has grown to $1,601 ($1,744 when optional annual influenza vaccine is added for children six to 18 years of age).2 The vaccine cost alone to fully immunize each U.S. birth cohort (approximately 4 million children) is an estimated $6.4 billion.
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