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Teen getting vaccine

Survey: No increase in teen HPV vaccination rates for the first time in a decade

August 24, 2023

Teen HPV vaccination rates did not increase in 2022, the first time they have stagnated in about a decade, according to a new Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

About 76% of teens had received at least one dose of HPV vaccine, the study found. About 62.6% had completed the series including 64.6% of females and 60.6% of males.

The data come from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) analysis of just over 16,000 children ages 13 to 17 from the 2022 National Immunization Survey-Teen.

Authors noted a 3-point decrease in starting the HPV series among teens insured by Medicaid in 2022 compared to 2021. Those who were uninsured had the lowest rates, “highlighting the continued need for outreach among adolescents eligible for VFC (Vaccines for Children),” they wrote.

The VFC program provides free vaccines to children who are Medicaid-eligible, uninsured, underinsured, American Indian or Alaska Native. Authors called the program “vital to reach and administer vaccines to eligible adolescents to maintain vaccination coverage in underserved communities.” They also noted a concerning decrease in VFC provider orders for HPV vaccines. They declined 24% in 2020, 9% in 2021 and 12% in 2022.

Coverage with other vaccines in 2022 also was similar to 2021, but most are already significantly higher than HPV coverage. The coverage rates for other vaccines among teens were:

  • 91.2% for at least three doses of hepatitis B,
  • 91.2% for at least two doses of measles, mumps and rubella,
  • 90.8% for at least two doses of varicella with no history of the disease,
  • 89.9% for at least one dose of tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis (Tdap),
  • 88.6% for at least one dose of meningococcal conjugate (MenACWY),
  • 85% for at least two doses of hepatitis A,
  • 60.8% for at least two doses of MenACWY and
  • 29.4% for at least one dose of meningococcal B, which is given based on individual decisions between families and clinicians.

Authors expressed concern about some declines in coverage among the cohort born in 2008 and called on health care providers to review patients’ records to identify those who are behind.

“In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many families might have missed well-child appointments when vaccinations were due,” they wrote. “Ensuring that adolescents are up to date with recommended vaccines (Tdap, MenACWY, and HPV) is the best way to protect them from vaccine-preventable diseases.”



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