Vaccine Awareness

August has several health observances. Being the vaccine coordinator for Western Medical Associates, the one most near and dear to my heart is vaccine awareness. “National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM) is an annual observance held in August to highlight the importance of vaccination for people of all ages. Communities across the country use the month each year to raise awareness about the important role vaccines play in preventing serious, sometimes deadly, diseases across the lifespan” (CDC, 2018). Vaccination isn’t just for kids! Not only does adult vaccination protect the adult, it also helps protect those children who, either due to age or health condition, can’t be immunized or fully immunized. We call this “herd immunity.” Many often deadly diseases are nearly unheard of thanks to immunization. The last case of polio in the United States was in 1979, but we are a global community. Polio is still just a plane ride away. There are three countries where polio is still endemic; Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria (World Health Organization, 2018). Keep your family safe by getting all of the recommended vaccines at the recommended times. You are not only protecting your family, but the family sitting next to you as well! Don’t forget to get your teen the meningococcal vaccines and the HPV vaccine! For more information, see the links and videos below.