CDPHE launches new resource for local-level immunizations data

Written by: Sarah Hughes
Date Posted: June 16, 2017

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment this week launched a comprehensive new database containing data on immunization and exemption rates for nearly every Colorado school and school district, as well as for preschools, child care centers and Head Start programs serving more than 10 children.

The database is a result of a 2014 bill for which the Children’s Campaign advocated alongside several other partners. It provides parents and advocates with a first-of-its-kind glimpse into how immunization rates vary at the local level. Users can examine immunization rates for specific vaccines, as well as exemption rates for three types of exemptions—personal belief exemptions, exemptions for medical reasons, or religious exemptions.

Key takeaways from the database include:

  • At the school district level, the percent of students whose families claimed an exemption from at least one immunization ranged from zero in the Campo, Eads, Karval and Yuma school districts to nearly 25 percent of students in Moffat School District 2, located in Saguache County. The vast majority of exemptions in Colorado are personal belief exemptions, which are permitted by only 18 other states.
  • Eight child care centers and preschools—primarily located in large Front Range counties—had exemption rates of more than 33 percent, meaning one in three young children in these settings lacked up-to-date immunizations.
  • Approximately 86 percent of schools and 75 percent of preschools and child care centers reported the required immunizations data to CDPHE.

For more analysis of the new immunizations data, click here to read an article from Chalkbeat. You can also click here to explore the database and find immunization rates for your child’s school or child care center.

Sarah Hughes

About Sarah Hughes

Sarah Hughes is the Research Director for the Colorado Children’s Campaign. In this role, she leads the organization’s research and data efforts – including the development and publication of the annual KIDS COUNT in Colorado! report. Prior to joining the Children’s Campaign, Sarah worked in PR and communications, as well as working directly with children and adolescents in various capacities. She holds a Master of Social Work with a specialization in Advocacy, Leadership, and Social Change from the University of Illinois and a B.S. in Business and Political Science from Washington University in St. Louis.