Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Who Gets A Flu Shot?

The old have been far more likely than the young to get a flu shot each year, largely because Medicare picks up the tab for the elderly. Most everyone else has had to pony up to receive the vaccine, limiting the number of children and younger adults who get a flu shot despite the fact that those age groups are most likely to catch and spread the flu. Take a look at who got a flu shot in the past 12 months...

Under age 5: 62%
Aged 5-11: 46%
Aged 12-17: 38%
Aged 18-49: 26%
Aged 50-64: 43%
Aged 65-plus: 69%

These numbers might be about to change. The Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to cover preventive care such as flu vaccination for free. This could significantly boost the percentage of children and younger adults who get the flu vaccine.

Source: National Center for Health Statistics, Early Release of Selected Estimates Based on Data from the January-March 2011 National Health Interview Survey, Receipt of Influenza Vaccination

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