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A disturbing new government report, obtained exclusively by ABC News, raises serious concerns about the effectiveness of vaccines for childhood diseases.
An investigation by the Centers for Disease Control found medical facilities that are part of the federal vaccine program had serious violations in how they stored their drugs.
Seventy-five percent of the doctor's offices and clinics checked by federal inspectors had been storing their vaccines at temperatures that were too hot or too cold.
The same percentage had damaged goods in their vaccine refrigerators; and one out of four had expired vaccines.
"I think doctors need to be taking out to the woodshed on this," says ABC News chief health and medical editor Dr. Richard Besser. "Each state is responsible for its vaccine programs. Doctors need to look in their offices. Are my nurses doing this? Are the vaccines safe? The integrity of the program relies on this."
While experts say doses that are expired or kept at the wrong temperature won't directly harm a child, they can make the vaccine useless, leaving the kids unprotected from deadly diseases.
Dr. Besser says it's still crucial for children to get their shots. He recommends asking your pediatrician questions about how they store their vaccines.
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