We often focus on the immunity of children, but as patients age into adulthood and seniority, following recommended immunization guidelines is essential to their overall well-being. Vaccines for illnesses such as pneumococcal disease, tetanus, and shingles can help combat the deterioration of immunity that many patients will experience as they age.
HHS reports that an estimated 850,000 to 2.2 million people are living with HBV nationwide. With HBV vaccines available, clinicians and healthcare advocates can play a role in helping increase immunization rates and curb the spread of hepatitis B.
During pregnancy, there are many preparations that expectant mothers may make before welcoming a newborn: purchasing a stroller, preparing a nursery, buying clothes, diapers, wipes and many other items. Another way expectant mothers can prepare, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is vaccinating themselves against diseases, namely influenza and pertussis.
“You’re going to catch pneumonia.” We’ve all heard the phrase – and maybe even had it directed at us. But, providers know it is not that easy to “catch” pneumonia. In reality, people catch the bacteria, viruses or fungi that can eventually cause pneumonia. With this often-misunderstood illness, providers have an opportunity to educate patients about the severity of pneumonia and help them determine the immunization recommendations that are right for them.
With age comes wisdom. Unfortunately, when it comes to many aspects of healthcare, and specifically proper immunizations, not enough of our elders are wisely speaking up and receiving the regular schedule of vaccines they need. Therefore, it’s up to clinicians and caregivers to encourage our elders to always speak up for what they need to properly safeguard their health.
In the U.S., one in three people in their lifetime will be infected with shingles, a virus that can cause severe burning pain and a blistering rash. While the rash from shingles may disappear after a few weeks, for some individuals the debilitating pain can persist for months or years. This condition is called postherpetic neuralgia. Despite the widespread prevalence of shingles, and the potentially devastating long-term complications, vaccination rates to protect individuals from the virus remain lower than expected.
In 2010, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services set their sights on improved vaccination rates by 2020 as part of a far-reaching campaign “Healthy People 2020.” Yet, early metrics confirmed immunizations among adults are lagging behind schedule. As a result, the National Vaccine Program Office (NVPO) proposed a five-year plan to turn the tide.
All too often, the discussion on vaccines is centered solely on children. Certainly, the importance of childhood immunizations should not be diminished, but what about adults?