Updated Vaccinations Guidelines for Adults
On September 12, 2023, the CDC recommended an updated formulation of the COVID-19 vaccine for everyone aged 6 months and older. The main reason to get vaccinated against COVID-19 is to protect yourself against severe illness, hospitalization, and even death. Being vaccinated may also protect against long-COVID. This new vaccine is expected to provide better protection against the variants that are currently circulating (XBB lineage of the Omicron variant).
- You can get either Pfizer or Moderna vaccine no matter what you have received previously.
- You can get a COVID-19 vaccine at the same time as your flu vaccine.
If you prefer to get them separately, wait at least a few days between vaccinations.
- We have updated COVID-19 vaccines in our office
It is recommended that all individuals over 6 months of age get a flu shot annually. While effectiveness can vary from year to year, getting a flu shot reduces the severity of illness if you happen to get the flu and, more importantly, significantly reduces your risk of hospitalization, ICU-admission and death. Flu vaccination has also been shown to reduce risk of cardiac events. It also protects the more vulnerable people around you from getting sick from the flu.
- Adults over 65 years of age should get a “high-dose” flu vaccine which is more effective.
- All current flu vaccines are safe for people with an egg-allergy.
- We have both types of flu vaccine in our office.
RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus)
RSV is a common respiratory virus that usually causes mild, cold-like symptoms. Most people recover in a week or two, but RSV can be serious. Infants and older adults are more likely to develop severe RSV and need hospitalization.
- Adults 60 years old and older are eligible for a single dose of the RSV vaccine
- Talk to your provider to determine if the RSV vaccine is appropriate for you
- We recommend getting the RSV at least 2 weeks apart from any other vaccine.
- You need to get the RSV vaccine at a pharmacy.
It is recommended for all adults over age 50 to get 2 doses of the shingles vaccine to reduce the severity and any complications related to shingles, including postherpetic neuralgia which can be a long and debilitating condition.
- Anyone who has had chicken pox is at risk for getting shingles.
- You can still get the shingles vaccine even if you are not sure if you had chicken pox.
- You should still get the Shingrix shingles vaccine, even if you had the old Zostavax shingles vaccine years ago.
- You need to get the Shingrix vaccine at a pharmacy.
Vaccines protect against pneumococcal disease, which is caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria. This bacteria can cause serious-illness, including pneumonia, which can results in hospitalization and death. It is recommended that all adults over age 65 and those with underlying lung disease (asthma, COPD, smokers), receive pneumonia vaccines.
- There are 2 types of pneumonia vaccines available. Talk to your provider to determine which vaccines are appropriate for you.
- We have both types of pneumonia vaccines in our office.
Tetanus is an infection caused by Clostridium tetani bacteria which is found in dirt and can cause serious illness and even paralysis. It is recommended that all adults should get a tetanus booster every 10 years.
- We have tetanus vaccines in our office.
Medicare may not cover routine tetanus vaccines, in which case the vaccine can be given at a pharmacy.