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Medical Groups Pushing For Vaccine Wellness Checks For Teens

Groups believe that there should be official visits to make sure a child is getting their proper vaccinations once they turn 16 years old.

NEW YORK — With vaccination rates low for adolescents and teenagers, some major medical groups are issuing a call to action.  Several leading medical groups are urging to establish a 16-year-old immunization visit. Dr. Jay Berger is the Chief Medical Officer at ProHEALTH Care in New York. He says, "It gives the opportunity for the pediatricians and the families to sit down and review the vaccine schedule and find if there are any holes."

Among the vaccines teens can get at that visit are the second dose of the meningitis vaccine that protects against A, C , Y and W strains, the meningitis B vaccine, and the flu vaccine, depending on the time of year. "In addition, our teenage vaccines include the human papillomavirus - the HPV vaccine, which we give usually starting at 11 but sometimes we catch up or start it later in the teen years," Berger says.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, data shows only 44% of kids complete the meningitis vaccine by their 18th birthday and only 49% of adolescents have received the full HPV series.

With flu season approaching, studies show less than half of adolescents 13 to 17 years old receive the flu vaccine.

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