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Health Indicator Report of Immunization - Pneumonia Vaccination, Adults Age 65+

Recommended immunizations for adults aged 65 years and older include a yearly immunization against influenza (flu) and a one-time immunization against pneumococcal disease. Most of the deaths and serious illnesses caused by influenza and pneumococcal disease occur in older adults and others at increased risk for complications of these diseases because of other risk factors or medical conditions. Barriers to adult immunization include not knowing immunizations are needed, misconceptions about vaccines, and lack of recommendations from health care providers.


Question wording: Have you ever had a pneumonia shot? A pneumonia shot or pneumococcal vaccine is usually given only once or twice in a persons lifetime and is different from the flu shot. Have you ever had a pneumonia shot? U.S. is median value for 50 U.S. states and D.C.   Estimates for 2011 and forward should not be compared to earlier years (please refer to Data Interpretation Issues, below).

Data Sources

  • Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Survey Data, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, together with New Mexico Department of Health, Injury and Behavioral Epidemiology Bureau.
  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), accessed through AdultVaxView Interactive []

Data Interpretation Issues

Data for this indicator report are from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), an ongoing survey of adults regarding their health-related behaviors, health conditions, and preventive services. Data are collected in all 50 states, D.C., and U.S. territories. Responses have been weighted to reflect the New Mexico adult population by age, sex, ethnicity, geographic region, marital status, education level, home ownership and type of phone ownership. The survey is conducted using scientific telephone survey methods for landline and cellular phones (with cellular since 2011). The landline phone portion of the survey excludes adults living in group quarters such as college dormitories, nursing homes, military barracks, and prisons. The cellular phone portion of the survey includes adult students living in college dormitories but excludes other group quarters. Beginning with 2011, the BRFSS updated its surveillance methods by adding in calls to cell phones and changing its weighting methods. These changes improve BRFSS' ability to take into account the increasing proportion of U.S. adults using only cellular telephones as well as to adjust survey data to improve the representativeness of the estimates generated from the survey. Results have been adjusted for the probability of selection of the respondent, and have been weighted to the adult population by age, gender, phone type, detailed race/ethnicity, renter/owner, education, marital status, and geographic area. Lastly and importantly, these changes mean that the data from years prior to 2011 are not directly comparable to data from 2011 and beyond. Please see the [ BRFSS Method Change Factsheet]. The "missing" and "don't know" responses are removed before calculating a percentage.


The estimated percentage of New Mexico adults age 65 and older who have ever had a pneumonia immunization as reported by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.


The number of survey respondents age 65 and older who have ever had a pneumonia immunization . Data were weighted to adjust for effects of sample design and to represent the population distribution of adults by sex, age group, and area of residence.


The total number of survey respondents age 65 and older, excluding missing, "Don't Know" and "Refused" responses.

Healthy People Objective: IID-13.1, Increase the percentage of adults who are vaccinated against pneumococcal disease: Noninstitutionalized adults aged 65 years and older

U.S. Target: 90 percent

How Are We Doing?

In New Mexico, only two out of three Hispanics age 65 or older has ever received a pneumococcal immunization.

Evidence-based Practices

Immunizations are one of the most effective public health tools for preventing and eradicating disease; yet adult immunizations have not reached the coverage levels of childhood immunizations, particularly among members of minority groups. The low rates of immunization among adults is the result of many factors including: lack of access to preventive health services; the belief that adult immunizations are not necessary; and/or they lack basic knowledge about the high risks of disease and death linked to pneumonia/influenza in the elderly.
Page Content Updated On 01/31/2019, Published on 01/31/2019
The information provided above is from the New Mexico Department of Health's NM-IBIS web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: "Retrieved Tue, 26 March 2019 from New Mexico Department of Health, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site:".

Content updated: Thu, 31 Jan 2019 16:32:01 MST