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March 20, 1996

Polio Vaccine Schedule Will Change, but When?

JAMA. 1996;275(11):827. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03530350009004

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A NOTE of measured caution has been sounded as plans to recommend a shift from the current oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) to the inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) in the childhood immunization schedule move toward completion. The alert appears to have been triggered by the efforts of groups opposed to the change.

Four hours are to be scheduled for public comments on the proposal during the June meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which advises the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on vaccine policy recommendations.

At its February meeting, the ACIP considered a revised draft of the polio vaccination statement. In addition to laying down what it termed a "preferred schedule" that covers the change to IPV for the first two doses, it also provides an "alternative schedule" that, in principle, continues the current OPV schedule. Pending changes in details, the committee has