MONDAY, Nov. 13, 2023 (HealthDay News) — In 2022 to 2023, there was an increase in exemptions for vaccination among children in kindergarten, according to research published in the Nov. 10 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Ranee Seither, M.P.H., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues reviewed estimates for complete vaccination with the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR); diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis vaccine (DTaP); poliovirus vaccine (polio); and varicella vaccine (VAR), and exemption from vaccination using data reported by 49 states and the District of Columbia (DC) for the 2022 to 2023 school year.
The researchers found that for all vaccines, national coverage remained near 93 percent. Exemptions were low, but increased to 3 percent compared with 2.6 percent in the 2021 to 2022 school year. Compared with coverage in the 2021 to 2022 school year, coverage with the MMR, DTaP, polio, and VAR vaccines decreased in 29, 31, 28, and 25 states, respectively. In 40 states and DC, exemptions increased; 10 states reported that >5 percent of kindergarteners had an exemption from at least one vaccine.
“A better understanding of the reasons behind nonmedical exemptions increasing in 40 states and DC, and their impact, could help develop policies that would complement those interventions, to bring higher vaccination coverage and protection against vaccine-preventable diseases within reach of more states,” the authors write.
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