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Health professionals talk ‘vaccine gap’ at annual summit


Charleston Gazette
By Lydia Nuzum

Despite its success in vaccinating school-age children in recent years, West Virginia is only a “plane ride away” from its own measles outbreak thanks to gaps in vaccine rates for the rest of its population, according to local and state health professionals.

According to Donna Weaver, nurse educator for the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while the state’s vaccine rate for children entering school is about 97 percent, its rate of 13 to 17 year olds who have received the tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccine (Tdap) hovered around 79 percent in 2013, 10 percentage points below the national average.

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