40,000. That’s how many Americans die each year from diseases that can be prevented by vaccines. The reason: Many adults may falsely believe that vaccines are only for kids or are worried vaccines carry risks that outweigh the benefits.
These are two of the chief findings of a new report by the American Academy of Microbiology on adult vaccines that aims to prompt more Americans to get shots to prevent influenza, shingles, measles, whooping cough and other diseases.
The report -- entitled FAQ: Adult Vaccines – A Grown Up Thing to Do – notes that many adults do not understand how vaccines work and may not know the benefits of vaccination don’t end in childhood.
"Because 40,000 adults in the US die each year of vaccine-preventable diseases, it is important for adults to be aware of the options available to them for vaccination" said Dr. Nicola Klein of the Kaiser Permanente Vaccine Study Center, a steering committee member for the report.
The report, which was produced by 18 of the nation's leading health experts, answers frequently asked questions about vaccines for adults. Among them:
What are the recommended adult vaccines and how do they work?
Why do adults need to be vaccinated?
How can getting vaccinated as an adult help protect my children or elderly parents?
Are vaccines safe – and how do we know this?
The report is available online at http://bit.ly/xuletv