Primary care and immunization is recognized as most important form of healthcare for maintaining healthy population because it is relatively cheap and if properly administered it is most effective in preventing fatal diseases from progression.
In the U.S, accessibility to immunization is influenced by many factors such as knowledge, availability, affordability, acceptability, and social support. The last three factors have received maximum attention in U.S. They reflect healthcare financial arrangement and cultural factors. While the first two factors are spatial in nature. Availability refers to number of local service points available from which the immunization program can be carried out while accessibility is travel impedance (distance or time) between patient’s location and service points.
Despite the fact that from 2006 to 2007 there was a 0.5 percent increase in the number of fully immunized pre-school children, each year nearly one million of these children are still not fully immunized on time. Preschool children are more vulnerable to childhood disease and therefore are most in need of comprehensive preventive vaccinations. However, this is the age group with lowest vaccination rates. Distance to healthcare service centers, affordability, acceptability and lack of awareness was recognized as a significant barrier to the immunization program in the U.S.
To increase the immunization coverage, a special health education program should be emphasized on the severity of vaccine preventable disease and the benefit of immunization for the mothers with low socio-economic status. Organizations and social workers should be motivated to participate in immunization program. All these programs should be designed to encourage the mothers to utilize the immunization services completely.
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