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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Promising Immunization Rates for Nevada Teens
(August 29, 2017) – Immunize Nevada and the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health, Nevada State Immunization Program are pleased to announce the recently released 2016 National Immunization Survey (NIS-Teen) shows improvements, especially in human papillomavirus (HPV) immunization rates among males.
In the 2016 NIS-Teen Survey, coverage with one dose of the HPV vaccine increased among all adolescents by 12 percent compared to 2015; almost two-thirds of Nevada’s teens have initiated the vaccine series to protect them from HPV cancers. While the overall increases are impressive, one dose HPV vaccine coverage rates increased dramatically for male adolescents by 46 percent from 2015. Recently updated vaccination recommendations make it simpler for parents and healthcare professionals to prevent cancer.
The increase in males receiving the HPV vaccine is especially important in preventing devastating oral and neck cancers that are rising significantly in males. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is estimated about 3,200 new cases of HPV-associated oropharyngeal cancers are diagnosed in women and about 13,200 are diagnosed in men each year in the United States. Every year adolescents are not vaccinated is another year they risk being exposed to cancer-causing infections.
“Our state and local efforts continue to have a positive impact on adolescent immunization rates,” said Shannon Bennett, Section Manager for the Nevada State Immunization Program. “Of course, there is always room for improvement, but we will continue to work with Immunize Nevada to educate parents, policy-makers, physicians, and health care professionals about the importance of the HPV vaccine.”
Nevada also met the Healthy People 2020 targets for vaccination coverage levels of one dose of Tdap and one dose of MenACWY (vaccines to protect against the infections that cause whooping cough and meningitis). Coverage estimates for two doses of Varicella and two doses of MMR were similar to 2015.
“It’s inspiring to see the direct impact of the work our state, partners, and health care providers have done to improve our teen immunization rates,” said Heidi Parker, Executive Director at Immunize Nevada. “While most parents are now choosing to get the HPV vaccine for their child, outreach efforts and collaborative partnerships will continue to expand as we strive to meet or exceed Healthy People 2020 goals, assist parents in completing the HPV vaccine series, and ensure an HPV Free Nevada.”
Additional NIS information is available at https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/imz-managers/nis/about.html. For more information about immunizations in Nevada visit www.immunizenevada.org or follow us on social media.
Immunize Nevada is widely recognized as Nevada’s trusted resource for immunizations and community health for all ages by fostering education and statewide collaboration. Healthy communities across Nevada protected from vaccine-preventable disease. For more information, visit ImmunizeNevada.org.