Immuno-Logistics; June 1994; Scientific American Magazine; by Stix; 3 Page(s)
The six major vaccines administered every year to some 110 million of the world's children who are fortunate enough to get them-- whether in Mogadishu or inner-city Miami--cost more to deliver than to make. The United Nations Children's Fund, for example, spends a total of $1.50 per child on the vaccines produced for diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, poliomyelitis, measles and tuberculosis. That amount is a tenth of what a government then has to disburse for labor, transportation, training and refrigeration to get these vaccines to infants and young children.
Streamlining the way vaccinations are administered would bring about more savings than would measures to lower the cost of these commodity vaccines. "It's an almost perfect use for the science and technology coming out of the biotechnology industry," says Anthony Robbins, who is helping to develop a Clinton administration program to immunize all children born in the U.S. against a battery of diseases.