An Evaluation of Voluntary 2-Dose Varicella Vaccination Coverage in New York City Public Schools

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Abstract

Objectives

We assessed coverage for 2-dose varicella vaccination, which is not required for school entry, among New York City public school students and examined characteristics associated with receipt of 2 doses.

Methods

We measured receipt of either at least 1 or 2 doses of varicella vaccine among students aged 4 years and older in a sample of 336 public schools (n = 223 864 students) during the 2010 to 2011 school year. Data came from merged student vaccination records from 2 administrative data systems. We conducted multivariable regression to assess associations of age, gender, race/ethnicity, and school location with 2-dose prevalence.

Results

Coverage with at least 1 varicella dose was 96.2% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 96.2%, 96.3%); coverage with at least 2 doses was 64.8% (95% CI = 64.6%, 64.9%). Increasing student age, non-Hispanic White race/ethnicity, and attendance at school in Staten Island were associated with lower 2-dose coverage.

Conclusions

A 2-dose varicella vaccine requirement for school entry would likely improve 2-dose coverage, eliminate coverage disparities, and prevent disease.

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