Running the numbers: US vaccination rates up ever so slightly; New Jersey way below national average

Earlier today, the CDC posted the results of its 2010 National Immunization Survey, which monitors vaccination coverage for kids between 19 and 35 months of age. The numbers are encouraging:

Nationally, vaccination coverage increased in 2010 compared with 2009 for ≥1 dose of measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR), from 90.0% to 91.5%; ≥4 doses of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV), from 80.4% to 83.3%; the birth dose of hepatitis B vaccine (HepB), from 60.8% to 64.1%; ≥2 doses of hepatitis A vaccine (HepA), from 46.6% to 49.7%; rotavirus vaccine, from 43.9% to 59.2%; and the full series of Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccine, from 54.8% to 66.8%.

Coverage for the MMR vaccine, the polio vaccine, and the varicella (or chickenpox) vaccine are all above the national targets  of 90% — which is obviously wonderful news. It’s particularly nice to see the uptick in children getting one or more dose of MMR, which reverses what happened between 2008 and 2009, when there was a decrease from 92.1 percent to 90.0 percent.

I’d guessing that a year from now, we’ll learn that MMR rates continued to rise in 2011: It’s hard to imagine how the nationwide measles outbreaks would have any effect other than further reinforcing the importance of getting your shots.

The data that jumped out at me was in the state-by-state breakdown. Only 10 states have MMR rates below 90 percent — and two of those (New York and New Jersey) are in the Tri-State area. New Jersey’s 86.1 figure was particularly eye-popping: the only other state below 87 percent is Montana.

See also:

* The financial implications of the US measles outbreaks
* Is Dr. Bob Sears moving away from his profitable anti-vaccine pandering?
* After disappearing from his family’s site, Sears tells Facebook fans that measles outbreaks not “much risk” for infants

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