Prior to becoming a member of the Heartland staff, Kendall graduated from Saint Mary's College in Notre Dame, Indiana in 2011. There she earned a dual-degree in political science and communication studies, as well as completed scholarly research on the film Frost/Nixon, evaluating its implications regarding the relationship between journalists and politicians. As a student, Kendall worked with the Saint Joseph County Republican Party in South Bend, Indiana, aiding the Party's communication efforts by reporting on both local and national issues and facilitating contact with County candidates. She also held a communication internship position at WZZM 13 News in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Latest posts by Kendall Antekeier (see all)
- A Wealth Redistribution Halloween - October 31, 2012
- Hobby Lobby Files Suit Over HHS Contraceptive Mandate - September 13, 2012
- A Political Push to Stop the Implementation of Health Insurance Exchanges - July 3, 2012
The Heartland Institute has been diligently following the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice’s (ACIP) decision on whether to recommend meningitis vaccination for infants. With three different meningitis vaccines under consideration, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) held four “public” meetings “to gather public opinion” on the topic. The ACIP is expected to make a decision within the next few months.
In the meantime, however, the ACIP has come out with a recommendation for a different meningitis vaccine for infants, MenACWY-D. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved this 2-dose vaccine for all infants between the ages of 9 and 23 months. However, the ACIP has decided to limit the availability of this drug, recommending it only for infants with “certain risk factors” or those who are at “high risk” of developing the illness. (A ACIP recommendation directly affects how available a vaccine will be on the market.)
The ACIP defined “high risk” as children “with persistent complement component deficiencies,” those who are traveling to or from countries where meningitis is “hyperendemic or epidemic,” or those in “a defined risk group during a community or institutional outbreak.”
So, once there is an outbreak of meningitis, then children should be vaccinated… what happened to preaching for preventative care?
Without a full ACIP recommendation, access to the vaccine is restricted, and parents are robbed of that decision – all while millions of infants go without protection from a deadly disease.
Parents, under guidance from a physician, should be able to decide whether they feel their child is at enough “risk” of developing the disease to warrant vaccination.
Heartland Senior Fellow Richard Dolinar, M.D. will be writing an in-depth article on this topic in the weeks to come.