WASHINGTON, Aug. 24 (UPI) -- Former first lady Rosalynn Carter Tuesday released a report showing 20 percent of U.S. preschoolers do not get routine vaccinations on time.
Carter, president of the early immunization campaign Every Child By Two, along with the non-profit group Trust for America's Health, called for more funding for immunization programs and increased access to immunizations for children.
Carter told a telebriefing 2.1 million children are not fully immunized, a situation that could be fixed by implementing recommendations in the report.
"No child should have to suffer from unnecessary disease that can be prevented by vaccinations," Carter said.
Betty Bumpers, campaign cofounder and former first lady of Arkansas, said $42 billion in medical costs could be saved if all children were fully vaccinated.
The report recommended:
-- Full use of immunization registries to ensure vaccines are kept up-to-date,
-- Improving access of the underinsured to vaccinations and requiring insurers to cover all childhood vaccines,
-- Educating the public about the benefits and safety of vaccines,
-- Increasing Centers for Disease Control and Prevention funding for vaccines.