FRIDAY, Oct. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For the 2018 to 2019 school year, coverage was 94.7 percent for two doses of the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, according to research published in the Oct. 18 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 summarized data collected on vaccination coverage among children in kindergarten in 49 states, exemptions for kindergartners in 50 states, and provisional enrollment and grace period status for kindergartners in 30 states.
The researchers found that national vaccination coverage was 94.9, 94.7, and 94.8 percent for the state-required number of doses of diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccine, two doses of MMR vaccine, and state-required doses of varicella vaccine, respectively. Overall, 2.5 percent of kindergartners had an exemption from at least one vaccine, while 2.8 percent were not up to date with the MMR vaccination and did not have an exemption. If all nonexempt kindergartners were vaccinated in accordance with local and state vaccination policies, nearly all states could achieve the recommended ≥95 percent MMR coverage.
"CDC works with immunization programs to collect and report data on school vaccination coverage, exemption rates, and grace period and provisional enrollment each year," the authors write. "Immunization programs can use these data to identify schools and communities with high concentrations of undervaccinated students and inform strategies to increase vaccination coverage."