WASHINGTON -- President Bush has announced that the federal government would begin a nationwide campaign to immunize children against preventable diseases by age 2.
Pediatricians and other public health experts said Mr. Bush's proposal was belated and inadequate.
Mr. Bush also announced a federal program intended to reduce infant mortality by increasing the number of women who get prenatal care. This program is called Healthy Start, but Democrats derided it as a "late start," saying it was prompted more by the political calendar than by genuine interest in child health problems. The centerpiece of the new program announced yesterday is a 30-second television commercial saying, "Every 13 minutes another infant dies."
Yesterday's announcements were part of Bush's effort to show an active interest in domestic social and economic problems. Democrats, including Bill Clinton, the likely Democratic presidential nominee, say Bush has neglected those problems since he took office.