The COVID-19 pandemic caused many families and children to miss routine doctor visits and yearly physicals, leading to a decrease in vaccination rates across the country. This is in reference to the COVID-19 vaccination, but also regularly scheduled vaccines for the flu; measles, mumps and rubella; whooping cough, and many more.

In FY 2022, rates of vaccination against human papillomavirus, which causes cervical cancer, among other illnesses, declined 11 percent among adolescents, The Washington Post reported last month, and only 60 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds in the U.S. are vaccinated against COVID-19. Therefore, I strongly believe that states should create vaccination incentive programs to encourage students to get vaccinated for COVID-19, the flu and any other infectious disease that can be prevented by a vaccine. The decrease in regularly scheduled vaccinations being given out can increase students’ potential for health risks and illness exposure for not only COVID-19 but also chickenpox, among other infections.

We can all acknowledge that the pandemic was a major disruption in everyone’s lives. However, there are solutions to begin to somewhat return to normalcy, including increasing vaccination rates for preventable infectious diseases for students and families across the United States.

Sophie Frantz

Related Headlines

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: