Healthcare Professionals must work together to increase adolescent immunization rates

Professional Resources

Adolescent immunization rates lag far behind childhood rates. As a result, adolescents are left needlessly exposed to serious diseases that can cause immediate and irreparable harm, such as meningococcal disease, and infections like hepatitis B and HPV that can lead to long-term health crises including certain cancers. 

One of the prime opportunities to vaccinate and provide counsel about the importance of immunization occurs during regular wellness visits, but adolescents don’t make these visits as often as they should. It is therefore critical to take every opportunity, including visits outside of the routine check-up (e.g., for illness or sports physicals) to open the dialogue with parents and guardians about immunization.

Resources

Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) Abbreviations for Vaccines

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Adolescent Immunization Backgrounder

Background information on the US adolescent immunization program status and the need to improve adolescent immunization rates

Adolescent Vaccination: Protecting Adolescents Now and Into the Future

National Foundation for Infectious Diseases: Call to Action addressing practical strategies for improving adolescent vaccination rates

CDC Immunization Recommendations for Adolescents

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Fact Sheet

National Foundation for Infectious Diseases: Summary of current vaccines recommended to protect adolescents against serious infectious diseases

Keys to Storing and Handling Your Vaccine Supply

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): Video covering vaccine storage and handling best practices, errors, and how to prevent them. CE credit available until 4/17/16.

Recommendations for Institutional Prematriculation Immunizations

American College Health Association (ACHA)