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June 16, 2000

Running Time: 00:56:29
Format: RealAudio (Requires free RealPlayer)

Despite record levels of vaccination in the United States, the country's immunization system is weakening in spots, increasing the risk of disease outbreaks, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academies. It recommends an overhaul of the way the system is financed, including an investment of more than .5 billion over five years by federal and state governments -- an annual increase of 5 million over current spending. The money is needed to shore up the system's critical infrastructure and to better integrate public and private vaccination efforts.

Bernard Guyer, Professor and Chair, Department of Population and Family Health Sciences, Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health, and David R. Smith, M.D., President, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.