Congresswoman Stacey E. Plaskett released the following statement regarding a $2,000,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the Virgin Islands Department of Health Group:
“Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services granted the U.S. Virgin Islands $2,000,000 for the Virgin Islands Department of Health Group for the Immunization and Vaccines for Children program. Today, children in the United States routinely get vaccines that protect them from more than a dozen diseases such as measles, polio, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (whooping cough). Most of these diseases are now at their lowest levels in history thanks to years of immunization. Children must get at least some vaccines before they may attend school.
“Vaccines help make you immune to serious diseases without getting sick first. Without a vaccine, you must actually get a disease in order to become immune to the germ that causes it. Vaccines work best when they are given at certain ages. For example, children don’t receive measles vaccine until they are at least one year old. If it is given earlier it might not work as well. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention publishes a schedule for childhood vaccines. This is an important grant when it comes to protecting the children of the Virgin Islands.”