The need to optimize adolescent immunization

Committee on Infectious Diseases

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


The adolescent period heralds the pediatric patient's transition into adulthood. It is a time of dynamic development during which effective preventive care measures can promote safe behaviors and the development of lifelong health habits. One of the foundations of preventive adolescent health care is timely vaccination, and every visit can be viewed as an opportunity to update and complete an adolescent's immunizations. In the past decade, the adolescent immunization schedule has expanded to include 2 doses of quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine, 1 dose of tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis, absorbed vaccine, 2 or 3 doses of human papillomavirus vaccine, depending on the child's age, and an annual influenza vaccine. In addition, during adolescent visits, health care providers can determine whether catch-up vaccination is needed to meet early childhood recommendations for hepatitis B; hepatitis A; measles, mumps, rubella; poliovirus; and varicella vaccines. New serogroup B meningococcal vaccines are now available for those at increased risk for meningococcal disease; in addition, these serogroup B meningococcal vaccines received a Category B recommendation for healthy adolescents, where individual counseling and risk-benefit evaluation based on health care provider judgements and patient preferences are indicated. This clinical report focuses on the epidemiology of adolescent vaccine-preventable diseases by reviewing the rationale for the annual universally recommended adolescent immunization schedule of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. In addition, the barriers that negatively influence adherence to this current adolescent immunization schedule will be highlighted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere20164186
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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