Internet Explorer no longer supports some features of our website. For best results, use Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, Firefox, or Safari.
man getting a bandaid after a vaccine

Vaccines are one of the biggest public health victories in human history – in fact, immunizations have saved more lives than any other advance in medicine. Through use of vaccines, we have eradicated smallpox, nearly eliminated polio, and have greatly reduced child and adult morbidity and mortality. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that vaccines save the lives of 2.5 million people each year and protects millions more from severe illness and disability.

How do vaccines work?

Vaccines teach the immune system how to fight diseases by imitating an infection. They harness your immune system’s natural ability to detect and destroy disease-causing germs and once your immune system knows how to fight a disease, it can protect you for many years.

Why are vaccines important?

In 2019, the WHO listed vaccine hesitancy as one of the biggest threats to global health. Vaccines lower your chance of getting certain diseases, reduces the chance of spreading disease, and can even save your life. Immunization is a simple, safe, and effective way to protect yourself and your loved ones.

Why are vaccines safe?

All vaccines are thoroughly tested before they are recommended for use. Every vaccine is authorized and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ensure that the vaccines we receive are safe. Once a vaccine is approved, it continues to be tested for quality and safety.

Recommended Vaccines for Children (4-18 years of age)

  • The seasonal flu vaccine is recommended every year for children 6 months and older
  • The COVID-19 vaccine is recommended and available to everyone 6 months and older. Everyone 5 years and older should get a COVID-19 booster, if eligible.
  • At age 4-6, it is recommended that your child receive their 5th dose of the DTaP vaccine to protect against diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough. Other doses should have been administered at 2 months of age, 4 months, 6 months, and 15-18 months.
  • At age 4-6, it is recommended that your child receive their 2nd dose of the MMR vaccine to protect against measles, mumps, and rubella diseases. The first dose should have been administered at 12-15 months.
  • At age 4-6 it is recommended that your child receive their fourth dose of the IPV vaccine to protect against polio. Other doses should have been administered at 2 months of age, 4 months, and 6-18 months.
  • Between 4-6 years, it is recommended that your child receive their 2nd dose of the varicella vaccine to protect against chickenpox.
  • The HPV vaccine is recommended for children ages 11-12 to protect both boys and girls from HPV infections and cancers caused by the Human Papillomavirus. Two doses of vaccine are needed.
  • The Tdap booster vaccine is recommended for children ages 11-12. Tdap is a booster vaccine to protect against diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough.
  • At 11-12 years old, the MenACWY vaccine is recommended to protect against Meningococcal disease – bacterium types A, C, W, Y. Two doses of vaccine are needed. the 2nd dose is recommended at 16 years old.
  • At 16-18 years old, the MenB vaccine is recommended to protect against Meningococcal disease – bacteria type B. Two doses of vaccine are needed.

Recommended Vaccines for Adults

  • All adults need a seasonal flu (influenza) vaccine every year.
  • The COVID-19 vaccine is recommended and available to everyone 6 months and older. Everyone 5 years and older should get a COVID-19 booster, if eligible.
  • Every adult should get a Tdap vaccine once if they did not receive it as an adolescent to protect against diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough, and then a Td or Tdap booster shot every 10 years.
  • The hepatitis B vaccine is recommended for all adults aged 19-59 years to provide protection from hepatitis B.
  • The shingles vaccine is recommended for healthy adults 50 years and older to protect against shingles.
  • The pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) is recommended for all adults 65 years or older to protect against serious pneumococcal disease.

Please note that this is not a complete list if vaccines. Talk to your provider about what other vaccines you may need.

Vaccines promote health, serve the vulnerable, and keep our community safe. Protect yourself, and your neighbors, by staying up to date on recommended vaccines.


Photo: Madi Zaidel, Community Outreach SpecialistAuthor: Madi Zaidel, CHES®
Madi is a Certified Health Education Specialist and is currently the Community Health Outreach Specialist for Appalachian Regional Healthcare System. Madi holds a degree in Public Health and is working on her master’s degree in Public Health Nutrition. Madi is passionate about health promotion, health education, and holistic well-being, and is an advocate for health at every size (HAES).

ARHS Health Outreach programs use evidence-based initiatives to promote healthy behaviors, prevent disease, and encourage disease management practices. For more information or to request a program, contact Madi at (828) 268-8960.


 



Share this page

Facebooktwitterpinterestlinkedinmail