Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Children's Vaccines Health Center

Font Size

Vaccine Coverage High in U.S., But...

159 cases reported so far this year in unvaccinated people


Schuchat said PCV and DTaP booster shots are essential at age 2, and far too few children get them. DTaP protects against whooping cough.

"[Still], the percentage of children who get no vaccines remains low," Schuchat said. "Only 0.8 percent of children in the survey had received no vaccines at all."

Among the unvaccinated, 79 percent had philosophical objections to the vaccine. Typically, these objections concern fears about vaccine safety or adherence to religious beliefs. Theories that vaccines can lead to autism, however, have been widely discounted by scientists.

"Clusters of people with like-minded beliefs leading them to forgo vaccines can be susceptible to outbreaks when measles virus is imported," Schuchat said.

The Vaccines for Children Program, launched in 1993 to rectify a crisis of missed opportunities, makes vaccines available to most children and is credited with the high rates of vaccine coverage among America's children.

Today's local measles outbreaks represent a very different dynamic, Schuchat said. "Instead of our system missing opportunities to vaccinate young children, in some communities, people have been rejecting opportunities to be vaccinated," she said.

The national measles outbreak of 1989 to '91 that led to the creation of the Vaccines for Children Program was deadly. "During those years, about 55,000 cases of measles were reported in the United States, and 123 people died from measles," Schuchat said. "Hardest hit were unvaccinated preschool-aged children."

The current measles outbreaks aren't at the crisis level of 1989, but that could change quickly, Schuchat said.

Measles is common around the world, and continues to be imported to the United States, posing a threat to unvaccinated people. "All of the cases of measles reported in the United States in 2013 were associated with importations from other countries," Schuchat said. "Half of these cases originated from Europe."

The CDC recommends that children get a measles/mumps/rubella vaccine at 12 months and again at 4 to 6 years of age.

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

Baby getting vaccinated
Is there a link? Get the facts.
syringes and graph illustration
Get a customized vaccine schedule.
baby getting a vaccine
Know the benefits and the risk
nurse holding syringe in front of girl
Should your child have it?

What To Know About The HPV Vaccine
24 Kid Illnesses Parents Should Know
Nausea and Vomiting Remedies Slideshow
Managing Immunization Schedules For Kids

Doctor administering vaccine to toddler
gloved hand holding syringe
infant receiving injection

WebMD Special Sections