Every year in the whole of Spain there are 400'000 cases of chickenpox, 1'000 of which have to be treated in hospital. Five or six people die of grave complications caused by the disease. From January 2006 the Balearic Ministry for Health and Consumer Affairs will introduce a programme of free vaccinations for children between 11 and 14 years old. At the start of this programme, explained the director general of Public Health, Antoni Pallicer, there will be a budget of 105'000 euros to give 5'000 vaccinations against chickenpox. This programme has been initiated to stop adolescents suffering from this disease, the effects of which are worse when they are small. Until now vaccination has not been free.
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