August is National Immunization Awareness Month, and we’re here to inform Veterans and raise awareness on how vaccines protect your health and the health of your family and community!
Immunizations or vaccines are medical preparations given to individuals to help improve the body’s resistance to a particular disease. Getting vaccines will prevent outbreaks of many types of diseases and can also save lives.
Recommendations for getting immunizations or vaccines depend on your age, gender, health status, and family history. Below are some of the most common illnesses that can be prevented by getting vaccinated.
Click on the links below to open a new tab and learn more from the Veterans Health Library about an infection and vaccine associated with it.
• Hepatitis A
• Hepatitis B
• Measles, mumps, rubella
• Tetanus, diphtheria
• Human papillomavirus (HPV)
• Streptococcus pneumococcal pneumonia
• Pertussis (whooping cough)
• Overseas infections - vaccines for international travelers
A few facts about vaccines:
• Vaccines eliminated smallpox and polio in the U.S.
• Vaccines are one of the safest medical interventions we have
• People 6 months and older should receive a flu shot every year
• People age 65 or older need a one-time shot to help prevent pneumonia
• Once you get a vaccine it also protects others around you from getting that disease
• All adults need a booster shot every 10 years to protect against tetanus and diphtheria
• Measles and other diseases have been significantly reduced in the U.S. because of Vaccines
By getting educated on the right vaccines for you and your family, everyone can take preventive measures to live healthier lives. Stay informed and talk to your health care team to see which vaccines are best for you!
Below are some additional resources that can help you learn more about the vaccinations that are available.
Resources – (click links below to open in new tab)
Immunization Action Coalition Vaccinations for Adults – Tip Sheet (PDF)
VA’s Vaccines and Immunization page
VA’s National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Vaccine recommendations by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP)