Only 20.8 percent of U.S. children 5 to 17 years of age received a seasonal flu shot in the 2008-09 season and more needs to be done to boost that number, says a federal government report.
The data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System in 19 states will provide a benchmark for assessing implementation of new flu vaccination recommendation that all youngsters ages 5-18 receive a flu shot, say Centers for Disease Control and Prevention experts.
The 2009-10 flu season is the first full season with the new recommendations in place. Successful implementation may require an expansion of vaccination programs in schools and the community, together with expanded vaccination services in health provider offices, the report said.
The article appears in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.