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Rhode Island Lauded for Top Childhood and Adolescent Immunization Rates

Exceptional childhood and adolescent immunization rates have earned Rhode Island two awards from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and have placed the state in the nation's top tier for two vaccine series.

Rhode Island's coverage rate for the combined vaccine series children should complete by 2 years of age was 80.2%. This compares to the national average of 73.1%. This vaccine series protects children from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, varicella, pneumococcal disease, and Hepatitis B. Rhode Island's vaccination coverage rate for the vaccine series for adolescents between 13 and 17 years of age was 84.4%. The national average for this series was 64.2 %. This vaccine series protects adolescents from tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, meningococcal disease, and human papillomavirus (HPV).

"Children and adolescents in Rhode Island are being vaccinated against serious diseases thanks to the dedication of Rhode Island's pediatricians, family physicians, school personnel, and many other unsung heroes," said Director of Health Michael Fine, MD. "Children share close quarters at schools, at child care facilities, and at home. At a time when the rates of many vaccine-preventable diseases are rising, it is especially important that this population is protected."

Rhode Island shared the childhood series coverage rate top tier with Wisconsin, Kentucky, Massachusetts, and Washington, D.C. Rhode Island shared the adolescent series coverage rate top tier with Massachusetts and Washington, D.C.

The data was collected between 2010 and 2011 through the CDC's National Immunization Survey (NIS), a national telephone survey that provides information to help guide the nation's health policies.

Award recipients achieved the Healthy People 2020 goals of having vaccination coverage rates of greater than 80% for the two vaccine series. Healthy People 2020 is a federal initiative aimed at improving the health of all Americans by establishing health benchmarks for states.

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