FCVC is concerned not only for the well-being of the pets brought in for our care, but also for the well-being of our pet owners. We highlight National Immunization Awareness Month, because staying protected against serious illnesses can be a matter of just taking your shot. It’s a great time to make sure your pets are vaccinated, too. Not sure if your pets’ shot records are up-to-date? We can help you with that. Give us a call at 970-587-5140.

National Immunization Awareness Month

Immunizations (also called shots or vaccines) help prevent dangerous and sometimes deadly diseases. Immunization isn’t just for kids. To stay protected against serious illnesses like the flu, measles, and pneumonia, adults need to get vaccinated, too. National Immunization Awareness Month is a great time to promote vaccines and remind family, friends, and coworkers to stay up to date on their shots.

Back To School is Prime-Time for Vaccination Checks

One of the most important things a parent can do to protect their child’s health is getting their child vaccinated according to the recommended immunization schedule. Whether parents have a baby starting at a new child care facility, a toddler heading to preschool, a student going back to elementary, middle or high school – or even a college freshman – parents should check their child’s vaccination records.

Child care facilities, preschool programs, schools and colleges are prone to disease outbreaks. Children in these settings can easily spread illnesses to one another due to poor hand washing, not covering their coughs and sneezes and other factors related to interacting in crowded environments.
Serious health consequences can arise if children are not vaccinated. Without vaccines, children are at increased risk for disease and can spread disease to others in their play groups, child care centers, classrooms and communities. This includes spreading diseases to babies who are too young to be fully vaccinated and people with weakened immune systems due to cancer and other health conditions.
Additionally, states may require children who are entering child care or school to be vaccinated against certain diseases. Colleges and universities may have their own requirements, especially for students living in residence halls. Parents should check with their child’s doctor, school or the local health department to learn about vaccine requirements in their state or county.

Not Just For Kids

All adults should get recommended vaccines to protect their health. Even healthy adults can become ill and pass diseases on to others. Everyone should have their vaccination needs assessed by a health care professional. Certain vaccines are recommended based on a person’s age, occupation or health conditions (such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes or heart disease).

Vaccination is important because it protects the person getting the vaccine and helps prevent the spread of disease, especially to those who are most vulnerable to serious complications (such as infants and young children, the elderly and those with chronic conditions and weakened immune systems).

All adults should get an influenza (flu) vaccine each year to protect against seasonal flu. Some people are at high risk of serious flu complications and it is especially important these people get vaccinated. This includes older adults (65 and older), children younger than 5, pregnant women and people with certain long-term medical conditions like asthma, heart disease and diabetes.

Every adult should get one dose of Tdap vaccine (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis) if they did not get Tdap as a teen, and then receive a Td (tetanus and diphtheria) booster vaccine every 10 years. Women should get a Tdap vaccine during each pregnancy, preferably during their third trimesters (between 27 through 36 weeks of their pregnancy). For more information on maternal vaccination, check out NIAM Toolkit: Pregnant Women.

Adults 50 years and older are recommended to receive the shingles vaccine. Adults 65 and older are also recommended to receive both pneumococcal vaccines. Some adults younger than 65 years with certain conditions are also recommended to receive one or more pneumococcal vaccinations.

Adults may need other vaccines (such as hepatitis A, hepatitis B and HPV) depending on their age, occupation, travel, medical conditions, vaccinations they have already received or other considerations.

FCVC hopes that this showcasing this information will increase the awareness that immunizations are important in the overall well-being of people and their pets.

Attribution: National Public Heath Information Coalition and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention