HealthDay News — Adolescent rates of vaccination against human papillomavirus (HPV) and influenza are well below the target of 80% or higher, according to 2 American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) reports published in Pediatrics.1,2
The immunization rates vary considerably by vaccine and by state, the pediatricians’ group found.
In 2014, only 40% of girls and 22% of boys had completed the then-recommended 3-dose series of HPV vaccination. A 2-dose vaccination schedule is now recommended for youngsters who begin the vaccine series at ages 9 to 14, while the 3-dose schedule is still recommended for those who start the series at age 15 or older, and for those with certain immune system disorders.
In addition, the researchers found that during the 2015 to 2016 influenza season, only 46.8% of teens aged 13 through 17 were vaccinated against influenza.
“We often find that teenagers don’t visit their doctors as regularly as they did when they were younger, and they may be late or even miss important immunizations recommended to keep them healthy,” Joseph Bocchini Jr., MD, coauthor of the reports and former chair of the AAP Committee on Infectious Diseases, said in an academy news release.
- Bernstein HH, Bocchini Jr JA; Committee on Infectious Diseases. Practical approaches to optimize adolescent immunization [published online February 06, 2017]. Pediatrics. doi: 10.1542/peds.2016-4187
- Bernstein HH, Bocchini Jr JA; Committee on Infectious Diseases. The need to optimize adolescent immunization [published online February 06, 2017]. Pediatrics. doi: 10.1542/peds.2016-4186