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Health system ill equipped to provide vaccinations

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The majority of people in the United States don't get the vaccinations they need and in many cases haven't got a clue what they're missing out on, according to a pair of new surveys that highlight the shortcomings of the country's healthcare system.

The CDC surveyed 22,000 adults and found that most were unaware of the vaccinations they needed. Only about half had been given a tetanus vaccination in the past 10 years, while health officials recommend that everyone get a jab every decade. Only 11 percent of women 19 to 26 had received the HPV vaccine, and a paltry 6.7 percent of people over the age of 60 have been given a vaccine for shingles.

Those poor numbers are the result of a fragmented healthcare system, says Dr. William Schaffner of Vanderbilt University, with uneven insurance coverage and extremely low reimbursements for doctors. Further adding to the confusion: no clear idea exactly who is responsible for ensuring that people get vaccinated.

"It is cumbersome almost to the point of not being able to get the vaccine," Schaffner told.

- read the story from Reuters

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