Keep your children safe, vaccinate

Flu season is here, and I am confronted with reminders of how easy it is to access vaccines here in the U.S. – shots are available at the grocery store, work, assisted living homes and of course, neighborhood pharmacies.

But as I witnessed last year, it isn’t nearly that easy in other parts of the world. What we take for granted here can cost a young mother hours of walking; in countries where children are faced with the ravages of vaccine preventable diseases, parents embrace the opportunity to have their children vaccinated.

Access to vaccines is a key component in building healthy communities. It’s the simplest and most cost-effective way to keep children safe all over the world. A $1 investment in vaccines can net $50 savings in health care, lost wages and productivity, not to mention the benefit of stopping a disease like measles before it can spread.

I urge receiving a flu shot this season to let members of Congress know that it’s important to continue funding for global vaccination programs – to stand up for parents on the other side of the world who want the same access to vaccines as that we take for granted. Please take a moment to contact Rep. Kim Schrier and Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and let them know we need to give parents the same opportunities to keep their children safe as what we enjoy here.

– Susan Tyler