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Are you up to date on your other shots?

Wellness | August 12, 2021
Immunization schedules for all age groups.
COVID-19 vaccinations aren’t the only immunizations you need. Talk to your doctor to make sure you’re protected.

With all the attention on COVID-19 vaccinations, infection prevention experts want to encourage people of all ages to get all their other recommended immunizations as well.

Measles. Polio. Pneumonia. Whooping cough. It’s more important than ever for you and your loved ones to be protected against all of these and more.

“Some people may have put off regular vaccinations due to worries about getting in-person care during the pandemic,” said Natalie Blum, system director of Quality at PeaceHealth. “It’s really important that everyone, especially children, get caught up with any vaccinations that they may be behind on.”

Before the widespread use of vaccinations, many of today’s vaccine-preventable diseases were far more common and feared as much or more than COVID-19.

All ages need immunizations

Since babies and children can be especially vulnerable to serious diseases, many shots are recommended at this stage.  From birth to age 18, children will typically receive about 30 vaccine doses to protect against more than a dozen diseases. (Download the latest schedule of vaccinations recommended by the CDC for children.) CDC immunization schedule for children 2021

Vaccinating children is simple, safe and effective—and far more affordable than treating the disease or complications from it. Read more immunization facts.

But immunizations aren’t only for kids. Most adults need vaccines as well—to protect themselves and those nearby.

Most people older than 50 are encouraged to get a shot (series of two) to prevent shingles. Many of those older than 65 may also need a pneumonia vaccination. (Download the latest schedule of immunizations recommended by the CDC for adults.) CDC immunization schedule for adults 2021

Approximately 40,000 to 50,000 adults in the U.S. die from vaccine-preventable infectious diseases (or complications from those diseases) each year.

How many shots?

The number of recommended shots you need during your lifetime will vary by vaccine, age, immunization history and health status.

In some cases, one injection could protect you for the rest of your life while you might require a series of shots over a few months or years for full protection. A booster to prevent tetanus is generally recommended every 10 years.

A flu shot is encouraged every year for everyone older than six months, with a few exceptions.

Insurance, pharmacy and doctors

Most insurance plans cover the cost of shots and many vaccinations are available at pharmacies. If you know you're due for a certain vaccine, you can talk with your pharmacist to learn your options.

“If you want the full picture on your immunization status, talk to your doctor,” said Natalie.

Your provider can help you understand which vaccinations you and your loved ones should get to stay fully protected.


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