A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report finds the immunization rates for Iowa teens rose from 2017 to 2018 and exceed both the regional (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska) and national averages.
The 2018 National Immunization Survey measures coverage for the Tdap (diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough), meningococcal and HPV vaccines among teens aged 13 to 17. In 2018, Iowa’s Tdap vaccination rate was 94.0%, up from 93.4% in 2017 and higher than the national (88.9%) and regional (86.6%) rates. Similarly, vaccination for meningitis rose in Iowa from 83.6% in 2017 to 89.2% in 2018 and was higher than the national (86.6%) and regional (80.9%) rates.
Finally, 2018 HPV vaccination rates for males and females combined were 73.4% for the first dose and 55.1% for the completed series. In both cases, these rates were higher than 2017 and higher than the national (68.1%, 51.1%) and regional (66.4%, 47.6%) rates.
While this report is welcome news, vaccination is an ongoing effort that begins with every infant born and continues through its life. Recent disease outbreaks across the country illustrate that while vaccines are essential in preventing disease, many Americans do not utilize these life-saving tools to protect themselves, their families and their communities from vaccine-preventable diseases. Vaccines have the ability to protect Iowans of all ages from serious and sometimes deadly infectious diseases.
To view the entire CDC report, visit https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/index2019.html. To see which vaccines your child may need, visit https://www.idph.iowa.gov/immtb/immunization/schedule.