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What Vaccines Are Important to Get and When?

doctor administering vaccine to woman

Recommended Vaccine Schedule for Children and Adults

Immunizations have several benefits, including preventing the occurrence of epidemics/pandemics and protecting us from illnesses with devastating consequences.

Before they’re made available to the public, vaccines are carefully reviewed by scientists, doctors and other healthcare professionals in a process that can take a year or more.

>>> READ MORE: 6 Myths About Vaccines and the Facts You Need to Know <<<

In addition to decreasing the chance of a pandemic-level disease outbreak, adhering to the CDC-recommended vaccination schedule helps protect yourself and those you care about, including babies, those with compromised immune systems and the elderly.

Immunization schedules vary by age group, health or lifestyle conditions and previous vaccination or illness. The CDC-recommends the following vaccines and age at which to get them.

Vaccines needed from birth through six years old

When a young child’s own immune system is still developing, boosting infant and toddler immunity with immunizations is crucial to ensuring a healthy start. Below are the vaccines recommended for this early age group.

  • Hepatitis B (HepB)
  • Rotavirus (RV)
  • Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (DTaP)
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
  • Pneumococcal (PCV13)
  • Polio (IPV)
  • Influenza (Flu)
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR)
  • Chickenpox (Varicella)
  • Hepatitis A (HepA)

Vaccines recommended for seven years old through eighteen years old

As a child grows, their immune system begins to develop and add antibodies to their ‘immune library.’ Bolstering the immune system with immunizations for uncommon, vaccine-preventable diseases helps to defend against potential illness. Here are the recommended vaccines for this age group.

  • Influenza (Flu) annually
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis (Tdap) ages 11-12 years
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV) ages 11-12 years
  • Meningococcal (MenACWY) 11-12 years, 16-18 years

Vaccines recommended for adults

As adults,  the best way to take care of yourself is by getting the CDC-recommended immunizations as scheduled. It not only helps protect yourself, it also helps those around you who may have health issues that prevent them from receiving a vaccine.

Here are the CDC-recommended immunizations for an adult.

  • Influenza (flu) annually
  • Tetanus, diptheria, pertussis (Tdap or Td) booster every 10 years
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) if born in 1957 or later
  • Varicella/Chickenpox (VAR) if born in 1980 or later
  • Zoster/Shingels (RZ) age 50 and older
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV) age 19-26 years depending on previous vaccination
  • Pneumococcal (PPSV23) age 65 and older

To get more information about vaccines and when to get them, visit the CDC vaccine schedule website.

Immunizations mean more than just not getting sick

Staying up-to-date on immunizations not only helps you stay healthy and well, but you’re also protecting yourself against vaccine-preventable diseases that can help prevent an outbreak of a disease that has been either eradicated in the United States or has never existed here.

Finally, don’t forget the importance of getting the annual flu shot. This vaccine works to prevent common flu strains from spreading in the winter which can be an especially significant threat in Wisconsin due to dry weather and time spent indoors.

If you’re looking for more information on immunizations and/or have questions about how your Network Health plan supports a proactive and health-focused immunization schedule, contact us today.


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