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Vaccines; Low-Income Populations


As a health policy matter, coverage of immunizations and their administration for all ages at levels recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has grown in importance for several reasons: 1) the growing attention to both manmade and naturally occurring public health threats; 2) recognition of the value of immunization to society; and 3) the relatively high cost of at least certain immunization services in relation to personal income. No population stands to benefit more from immunization coverage than low income persons.

Studies suggest that adult immunization status is particularly low, and that financial barriers play a role, especially for low income persons. Medicaid is the nation-s single largest source of health insurance for children and adults. Eligibility for adults is linked to both membership in a recognized categorical status and low income, including individuals age 65 and over, adults (mostly women) in families with children, individuals with disabilities, pregnant women, and certain other categorical groups.

This review is the second in a series of studies which describes the different health insurance coverage options available to individuals and families in the United States for acquiring medically appropriate immunizations. This report analyses the provision of immunization services to adult beneficiaries of Medicaid. Coverage and payment information was reviewed from every state, while data from the District of Columbia was unobtainable.


Funder: National Immunization Program of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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