Maternal and Child Health Research Program

Advancing Applied MCH Research

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Grantees in the News

Why Teens Still Are Behind On Recommended Vaccines

Added: June 20, 2013

Dr. Darden

Dr. Darden

Paul Darden, MD

Despite the fact that vaccines have been found to be a safe and effective protection against a number of vaccine-preventable adolescent diseases, many teens are still not receiving recommended vaccinations. In the study “Reasons for Not Vaccinating Adolescents: National Survey of Teens, 2008-2010,” in the April 2013 issue of Pediatrics (published online March 18), study authors analyzed the 2008-2010 National Immunization Survey of Teens to determine why parents did not have their teens up-to-date on recommended adolescent vaccines, and how these reasons have changed over the years. Parents of teens who were not vaccinated for tetanus toxoid, diphtheria toxoid, and acellular pertussis/tetanus toxoid and reduced diphtheria toxoid and quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine all gave similar reasons, including “not recommended,” and “not necessary.” These reasons remained consistent over the years for Tdap/Td and MCV4. The main reasons parents did not get the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine for their daughters included the same as those for the other vaccines, and also included “not sexually active,” “not appropriate age” and “safety concerns/side effects.” Concerns about safety grew each year, from 4.5 percent in 2008 to 16.4 percent in 2010. Parents’ intent not to vaccinate for HPV also increased from 39.8 percent in 2008 to 43.9 percent in 2010. Study authors conclude that despite physician recommendations, parents refusing to immunize their teens against vaccine-preventable diseases like HPV is concerning, and may require more detailed discussion about vaccine safety and effectiveness in order to improve future immunization rates.

Publication: Darden PM, Thompson DM, Roberts JR, Hale JJ, Pope C, Naifeh M, Jacobson RM. Reasons for not vaccinating adolescents: National Immunization Survey of Teens, 2008-2010. Pediatrics. 2013 Apr;131(4):645-51. doi: 10.1542/peds.2012-2384. Epub 2013 Mar 18. PubMed PMID: 23509163. View Abstract Online. Exit Disclaimer

A Push for HPV Vaccinations -
Health professionals hope to make the shots more accessible, and to make the vaccine sound less scary to parents and daughters.

Peter Milgrom
Professor, Dental Public Health Services
University of Washington

Added: February 25, 2011

2010 Aubrey Sheiham Award

MCH Researcher Peter Milgrom wins 2010 Aubrey Sheiham Award for Distinguished Research in Dental Public Health Sciences. Visit the International Association for Dental Research web site for more information. Exit Disclaimer

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