Vaccine-preventable disease rates in the United States are at very low levels. However, this does not mean that immunizations are no longer important. The viruses and bacteria that cause vaccine-preventable diseases still exist and can be passed on to unprotected people or imported from other countries, as demonstrated by the recent measles outbreaks across the nation.
Diseases like measles and pertussis can have more severe complications than often assumed and can result in both medical and non-medical consequences, such as financial costs accrued through treatment and outbreak control expenses, absence from work or school, and disruption to healthcare systems when workers fall ill. As Ben Franklin once said “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” We can prevent a great deal of suffering and loss by keeping ourselves and our children age-appropriately vaccinated.
Please click on the links below to see clips from the video “Faces of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases” to learn more about the serious consequences that can occur when people acquire vaccine-preventable infections.
Surveillance Indicator Information
Additional Information About VPDs