Training

Are Your Workers Immune?

August is National Immunization Awareness Month, so take the opportunity to let your workers know that vaccinations aren’t just for kids. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) there are several reasons for adults to be vaccinated:

  1. They weren’t vaccinated as children.
  2. New vaccines are now available.
  3. Their immunity has faded with age.
  4. Their age makes them more vulnerable to common diseases such as flu or pneumonia.
  5. They plan to travel internationally.

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Because of these reasons, the CDC publishes a “Recommended Adult Vaccine Schedule,” which indicates that people aged 19 to 49 should receive a:

  1. Tetanus booster every 10 years,
  2. Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine, and
  3. Varicella (chicken pox) vaccine.

Adults aged 65 and over are especially at risk of the following diseases and should consider being vaccinated for:

  1. Diphtheria,
  2. Flu,
  3. Pneumonia, and
  4. Tetanus.

CDC also recommends that adults aged 60 and over receive the Zoster vaccine to help prevent shingles.

Encourage workers to find out their adult immunization needs by taking CDC’s online quiz called “What Vaccines Do You Need?” They can access the quiz by going to www.cdc.gov and searching for “adolescent and adult vaccine quiz.” CDC also provides an “Adult Vaccination Screening Form” in English and Spanish, which workers can find by searching for its title.

If your workers travel internationally for work or vacation, refer them to CDC’s “Traveler’s Health” page for vaccine information on their specific destinations.


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Why It Matters

  • Around 1 million Americans get shingles every year, and 50 percent of those infected are 60 years old and older. The Zoster vaccine can lower these numbers.
  • Around 36,000 people die from the flu in the United States each year. The flu vaccine can reduce the number of illnesses and deaths.
  • Since the polio vaccine in the 1950s, childhood diseases that once were common (polio, measles, mumps, diphtheria, and rubella) are now just memories for most Americans.

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