As the world anxiously awaits a vaccine for COVID-19, it has been reported that only half of Americans will choose to get vaccinated against the deadly virus. Unfortunately, this number is similar to the average flu vaccination rate in the United States each year – across all age groups, approximately 50% of people don’t get the flu shot. We want to remind you that getting vaccinated against vaccine-preventable diseases could save your life – and the lives of others.
Vaccination is crucial in both infancy/early childhood and into adulthood. Not only do vaccines protect you, they also are a critical component of public health. Since the start of the pandemic, we have seen how quickly and rampantly disease can spread in our communities. Vaccines help prevent the spread of contagious diseases so that we can protect those who are more vulnerable to illness, such as infants, the aging population, and those with compromised immune systems.
There is currently a lot of misinformation surrounding vaccines; please know that they are safe and effective, and they save lives. Many of us forget about diseases like measles and whooping cough because vaccines have prevented so many illnesses. The 2019 measles outbreak is a reminder that these diseases still have the power to infect people and spread through communities when not enough people are vaccinated.
In addition to the many vaccines that children need, there are also certain ones that adults need periodically, such as shingles, pneumonia, and tetanus vaccines. We encourage you to talk to your doctor about which immunizations you need based on your health history.
Dr. George Garrow, PHN’s Chief Medical officer states, “Due to the current pandemic, we have noticed that many patients are choosing to postpone or reschedule any in-person visits; however, there is one thing that shouldn’t be delayed – vaccines.” We want to assure you that our health centers are among the safest places one can visit, and we are following all guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to protect our patients and staff.
To increase capacity for those in need of immunizations, we are allowing for either established or non-established patients to be seen via telehealth from the comfort of their home. Once a telehealth visit is conducted, the patient will then come into the office for their vaccine(s).
Don’t put off your visit any longer – schedule an appointment today to make sure you are up-to-date with all immunizations!