Nevada’s vaccination rate lower than national average; Latin Chamber encourages community to get vaccinated

For vaccines such as the 4:3:1:3:3 vaccine series, Nevada at only 66.8 percent vaccination rate

LAS VEGAS – According to numbers for 2008-09 released by the CDC, Nevada has a lot of work to do when it comes to getting its residents vaccinated. The CDC’s goal for the U.S. is a vaccination rate of at least 90 percent. Yet, Nevada’s vaccination rates range dip as low as 66.8 percent (for the 4:3:1:3:3 vaccine series).

While a low vaccination rate is worrisome for any city, it’s especially so in a county like Clark, which plays host to millions of tourists each year. (In In 2009 alone, more than 36 million people visited Las Vegas, according to the official Las Vegas website.)  

As a result, the Latin Chamber of Commerce has been actively encouraging the community as a whole and, specifically, the Latin community, to get vaccinated – especially with school starting Aug. 29.

“A high vaccination rate is critical to ensuring our community is protected from outbreaks like several other states have seen recently,” said Otto Merida, president of the Latin Chamber, referring to the many measles and whooping cough outbreaks that have occurred throughout the country. “Many of these diseases are easily preventable through vaccinations – not just for children, but for the whole family. I encourage everyone to check the CDC’s list of recommended vaccinations and take the time to get their family fully vaccinated.”

The CDC’s list of recommended vaccines can be found here.

To help as many people as possible get vaccinated, The Latin Chamber hosted its annual La Opportunidad expo Aug. 13, which provided free immunizations for all children. The vaccinations provided at the expo were made possible through a partnership with the Southern Nevada Immunization and Health Coalition and the Helping Kids Clinic. A total of 96 children ages 6 weeks to 18 years old received a total of 276 shots, and 75 children received dental screening and 42 received vision screening at the expo.

Additionally, the chamber partnered with the Southern Nevada Health District, 100 Black Men of Las Vegas, The Philippine Nurses Association and The Philippine Medical Association in an effort to provide immunizations and community awareness through Shots 4 Tots, with funding made possible by United Way.  

In Washoe County, vaccination rates are higher but lacking nonetheless in many areas. Washoe’s vaccination rate for the 4:3:1:3:3 vaccine series is 81 percent.

For more information on vaccines and immunizations, visit http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/.

The Las Vegas Latin Chamber of Commerce promotes the interests of more than 1,500 members, as well as Nevada’s 7,000 Hispanic-owned businesses and 500,000 Hispanic residents. Since its inception in 1976, its mission has been to develop, advance and promote Hispanics and small businesses and to enhance the economic, political, social, educational and cultural interests of Hispanics in Nevada.

For more information on the Latin Chamber of Commerce, visit www.lvlcc.com.

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