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7 Limitations on vaccination programmes

7.1 Introduction

Where vaccination programmes have been successful, they have been immensely powerful and effective ways of combating infectious disease. Following the eradication of smallpox, a number of other diseases, including polio, mumps and rubella (German measles) are in line for global eradication over the next 10–20 years. Vaccines could, in theory, be developed for a larger range of infectious diseases than is currently the case, but there are complex economic, organisational and cultural limitations on vaccination programmes that are not easy to disentangle. Some of the major reasons why some diseases are apparently ‘neglected’ as candidates for vaccine control are discussed in this final section; you will readily identify other limitations on vaccination programmes when you conduct an Internet search into their progress at the end of this free course.