Are You Up to Date on Your Immunizations?

September 26, 2012
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While vaccinations aren’t for everyone, the Centers for Disease Control recommend various immunizations for different populations. Here’s what you need to know about potential vaccinations that could benefit you and your family.

Flu: Because different formulations of flu vaccines are developed each year—and everyone is at risk for getting the flu—the CDC recommends flu shots as soon as the new vaccine is available. The CDC especially recommends vaccination for those with medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes and chronic lung disease; pregnant women; people 65 and older; or people who live with or care for others who are at high risk of developing serious complications. (Pharmaca also offers preservative-free flu vaccinations, on request.)  

Whooping cough: Incidences of this infection have dramatically increased across the country in the last two years, and in California, state law now requires that middle and high-school students be vaccinated before entering school. Risk of death is highest in infants and small children, so these age groups, adults who come into contact with them and pregnant women are encouraged to stay up to date on their whooping cough/pertussis vaccinations. The CDC even recommends that teens and adults who were completely vaccinated as children have the Tdap booster vaccination.

Shingles: Zostavax immunizations can successfully combat this virus, which affects an estimated 1 million people each year. Shingles is a painful, contagious rash that shows up as a recurrence of the chickenpox virus. As we age, our immunity against the virus diminishes, so the CDC recommends a shingles vaccination for anyone over the age of 60.

Pneumonia: A type of pneumococcal disease, pneumonia is a bacterial infection that can be fatal in those with lower resistance. There are two types of vaccines for pneumonia, one for children under 5, and one called Pneumovax, which the CDC recommends for adults over 65 as well as adults 19-64 who have certain risk factors such as heart, liver or lung disease; alcoholism; asthma; and other conditions that compromise immunity.

All of these vaccinations can be requested on a walk-in basis at any of our pharmacies. In addition, Pharmaca offers Vaccination Clinics every Tuesday between 2-6pm throughout the flu season. Customers can bring their questions about immunizations and other health concerns to pharmacists and practitioners, and receive personalized advice about their health.

Want to save time? Download a patient intake form (PDF) ahead of time, fill it out and bring it with you when you request your immunization.

Learn more about the CDC’s vaccination recommendations.

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