Experts from around the world are taking the spotlight on a controversial and controversial proposal from the United States government to make vaccines for children as rare as polio.
A bill by Republican Senator James Lankford (Okla.) to fund vaccine trials for children aged 0-5 has drawn fire from medical professionals and parents who worry that the proposals could force families to choose between vaccinating their children against rare, potentially fatal diseases.
“I believe the vaccine for polio, the polio vaccine is the best of both world,” said Dr. Mark Rippon, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, Texas.
“The polio vaccine can save the lives of millions of children.”
The proposal is one of several proposals under consideration in Congress that could allow the US military to conduct vaccine trials on children as young as 6, or as old as 5, and could set a precedent for the US to expand such trials to other populations in the future.
Lankford’s bill, which is still pending in the Senate, would fund vaccine trial research for children up to age 5.
The proposal would also allow the Army Corps of Engineers to fund the study, with funding contingent on a federal grant from the National Institutes of Health, the department of defence, and private donors.
Lackland said he supports the idea of vaccinating children up until age 5, but he also worries that it will make it harder to keep children safe and that vaccinating young children would create incentives for parents to use drugs or other measures that might be harder to detect.
“The fact that we are getting older, and we have an increased risk of developing autism, asthma and other conditions, and that children in their 30s and 40s are being vaccinated is going to create more of a stigma around this,” he said.
“We don’t want kids to have to be vaccinated, but we don’t have the money to vaccinate them all, so we can’t vaccinate all of them.
I think there’s an economic case for doing it in a way that allows us to have the best health outcomes, but that also provides an opportunity for families to have some sort of protection from the virus.”‘
We need to be careful about what we say’Lankowds proposal is similar to a proposal that has been floated by Republican Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas, and the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen of New Jersey, and others.
Both bills, however, would make it a crime for the government to fund any type of vaccine trial without a federal vaccine grant.
Lacking a federal funding source, researchers could simply send their vaccine designs to private companies that are able to produce them.
But advocates of the vaccine studies say the government needs to ensure that the vaccine designs are safe and effective, and would not be allowed to continue funding vaccine trials until they have been tested on a small number of children.
“If we’re getting results and we’re able to get that data to the appropriate people, then the only people who should have access to that data are the people who actually can deliver the vaccine,” said Rippan, who co-authored a 2013 paper that estimated that the US could have a vaccine trial on the order of 50,000 children.
Lansford’s proposal would allow the military to fund a vaccine study for children younger than 5, as long as they were vaccinated by the end of the first quarter of 2021.
But the legislation would also provide the Corps of the Engineers with up to $1.6 billion over the next decade to fund trials for the next two years.
“It’s a little more complicated,” said Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.
“We need a better way of communicating and communicating the value of this to parents, and to doctors and to the medical community.”
Dr. Mark Rappaport, a professor at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said there are some benefits to testing on children, and some drawbacks to it.
“A vaccine could be developed that works better than the one you’re testing against,” Rappaports told the AP.
“It could be the vaccine that saves your life.
It could be it’s better than other vaccines you’re seeing around.”
The US spends $4.2 billion annually on vaccine trials.
In his statement, Lankford stressed that he supports vaccine trials and is willing to consider funding for them if they are safe.
But he said he doesn’t support the idea that vaccines would be given out at the same time as other treatments for diseases, and added that the current vaccine shortage would lead to a spike in vaccine demand, not supply.
Lakford said he hopes to introduce the bill again in the next few months.
Lanford said that if the bill were to become law, the Corps would work to secure a federal government-funded vaccine trial program in India, which has