The Dilemma Surrounding Adult Vaccinations

posted on Thursday, February 23, 2017

According to a recent article in the MCMS Physician Magazine, (Montgomery County Medical Society of Pennsylvania), a large percentage of adults are not getting standard adult vaccinations. Not only is this causing a near $9 billion economic burden in healthcare, but 50,000 adults are dying each year from a vaccine-preventable disease.

Common adult vaccinations include flu, tetanus/pertussis, shingles, pneumonia, meningitis, measles/mumps, HPV, chickenpox and hepatitis.

So why are so many adults not getting vaccinated?  Missed annual check-ups, incomplete medical records, lack of a consistent primary physician and overall patient knowledge and education are just a few of the reasons.

In an era of proactive healthcare it is important that all providers make adult vaccination the standard of care. It starts with letting the patients know of any updated vaccination guidelines and schedules. The National Vaccine Advisory Committee and CDC recommends healthcare providers promote adult vaccination by following The Practice Standards for Adult Immunization summarized below.

  1. Assess the immunization status of all your patients
  2. Recommend vaccines
  3. Administer vaccines and refer on for vaccinations
  4. Document vaccines

For more information on adult vaccinations visit the CDC website.