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October 22, 1997

Pneumococcal and Influenza Vaccination Levels Among Adults Aged ≥65 Years—United States, 1995

JAMA. 1997;278(16):1306-1307. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550160026014

IN 1995, pneumonia and influenza together ranked sixth among the 10 leading causes of death in the United States.1 An estimated 90% of deaths caused by these illnesses occur among adults aged ≥65 years.2 In addition, pneumococcal infections are the most common cause of bacterial pneumonia requiring hospitalization and account for an estimated 40,000 deaths annually in the United States.3 A national health objective for 2000 is to increase pneumococcal and influenza vaccination levels to ≥60% for persons at high risk for complications from pneumococcal disease and influenza, including those aged ≥65 years (objective 20.11).4 To estimate state-specific pneumococcal and influenza vaccination levels for persons aged ≥ 65 years, CDC analyzed data from the 1995 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). This report summarizes the BRFSS findings, which indicate sustained increases in self-reported coverage levels for pneumococcal and influenza vaccination