THE ARMY IMMUNIZATION PROGRAM
The primary purpose of the Army Immunization Program is to prevent disease
that might interfere with accomplishment of the military mission. Toward this end,
standards for handling, storage, and quality control of biological products are set up;
immunizations for "routine" and "special" circumstances are selected; dosages and
dose intervals are prescribed; measures for control of undesirable side effects are
required; and appropriate records of immunizations are initiated and maintained.
a. Standards. All biologicals obtained in this country for use in the Armed
Forces conform to the National Institute of Health (NIH) requirements for the production
and sale of such materials. If procured abroad, these products must conform to
standards equivalent to those of NIH. Expiration periods are based on previous
experience with these or similar agents and studies of the rate at which they lose
immunizing potency. Immunizing agents may not be used beyond the stated expiration
dates without specific authority from The Surgeon General. As a general policy,
biological products should not be ordered in quantities so great that they will not be
used before their date of expiration. Oral poliovirus vaccine and yellow fever vaccine
must always be shipped and stored at freezing temperatures (below 32F or 0C). All
other biologicals should be stored at temperatures between 2 and 8C (35.6 to 46.4F)
and should not be frozen.
b. Responsibilities. Maintenance of personnel in a current immune status is a
command responsibility. Unit personnel officers are required to check the immunization
status of each person in their units at appropriate intervals.
c. References. Technical information pertaining to immunizations, including a
list of standard Army stock items of biologicals, may be found in TB MED 114.
Administrative requirements and procedures for implementation of the program are
contained in AR 40-562. Because of the changing nature of immunization requirements and
new research data, the information contained in this subcourse is of a general nature
and reflects requirements as of this date. For more up-to-date details, the appropriate
current publication should be consulted.
Routine immunizations are those which are routinely administered to all military
personnel entering on active duty for periods in excess of 30 days. Routine
immunizations are further categorized according to specific geographical areas of the
world in which the prevalence of a particular disease warrants immunization. Figure 2-1
illustrates graphically the geographical areas requiring specific immunizations. Routine
immunization requirements may be found in AR 40-562.