The rate of routine immunizations for children has dropped dramatically as a result of shelter-in-place orders and social-distancing guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report released Monday. The agency compared data from Michigan’s immunization information system over the past four years for children aged two years and under. The rate of vaccine coverage for children aged 5 months plunged from two-thirds over the past four years to less than half in May 2020.
For children and teens under the age of 18, there was an over 20 percent decline in the number of influenza vaccines administered from January to April of this year compared with the past two years. The report warns that “concerted efforts are needed to ensure rapid catch-up for children who are not up-to-date” with vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.