According to the Pediatrics journal, deaths in children from chicken pox has been virtually eliminated in North America, thanks to widespread vaccination programs. While chicken pox is generally a mild disease, it can have serious complications such as pneumonia and flesh eating disease, sometimes leading to death.
Prior to the availability of the chicken pox vaccine in 1995, approximately 105 children died from the illness each year in the U.S. That number has fallen to an average of 14 deaths annually. In Canada, six children have died from chicken pox related illness between 2000 and 2005. Prior to the vaccine, on average six children died each year in Canada.
The chicken pox vaccine is given at 12 months of age. In some cases, a child’s physician may recommend a second dose of the vaccine.
Source: Pediatrics August 2011