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Most U.S. Babies Get Their Vaccines: CDC

But booster shots and second doses lag for 2-year-olds, report finds


Wharton said most insurance plans cover vaccines. People who can't afford them can turn to the federal Vaccines for Children Program, which provides vaccines for free.

Vaccine coverage also varies by state and vaccine, the CDC report found.

When the researchers looked at immunizations against 11 different diseases -- including chickenpox, measles and polio -- coverage ranged from a high of 82 percent in Rhode Island to 57 percent in Arkansas. Also, 17 states had less than 90 percent coverage with the measles/mumps/rubella vaccine.

For one disease, measles, which has made a recurrence in the United States, national coverage with at least one dose of the measles/mumps/rubella vaccine was 92 percent. While this seems high, one in 12 children did not receive the first dose of the MMR vaccine on time, putting lots of kids at risk for measles, the CDC noted.

As of Aug. 22, there had been 592 measles cases reported in the United States this year, the most since 1994, according to the CDC.

Measles is most often introduced into the United States by unvaccinated Americans who travel overseas to areas where measles is endemic. Measles can spread quickly in communities with unvaccinated and under-vaccinated people, the CDC pointed out.

Dr. Adriana Cadilla, a pediatrician at Miami Children's Hospital, said, "We still have a ways to go, but it's good to know that we're headed in the right direction" with childhood vaccinations.

Despite that progress, there are still some parents who oppose vaccinations, Cadilla said. "Those who are refusing are the ones that increase the risk to their communities," she said.

Since vaccines have made a lot of diseases rare, many parents don't have experience with how devastating they can be, she explained. "Vaccines are safe, and make sure your children are getting vaccinated," she added.


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