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National Immunization Awareness Month

National Immunization Awareness MonthYou’ve probably heard the old adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” That’s true of a lot of things in life, but especially true of vaccination. August is National Immunization Awareness Month, an annual observance highlighting the importance of getting recommended vaccines throughout life.

“If I could tell people one thing about vaccines, it would be that they are the biggest success story in the history of public health,” said Brandi Tackett, PharmD, Director of Infusion Services. “The World Health Organization did a study recently, and they estimated that about 5 million lives each year are saved thanks to vaccines.”

Vaccines empower people to protect themselves and their families against serious diseases like whooping cough, cancers caused by HPV and pneumonia, through on-time vaccination. “Vaccines save lives and prevent illness, said Brandi.

As children head back to school this fall, make sure vaccination is at the top of your checklist. August is also a key time to make sure you are up to date on all the vaccines you need to stay healthy. The best way to do this is to review what immunizations are available for you with your primary care provider.

While there is a small percentage of the population who cannot get certain vaccines because they are immunocompromised or have an allergy, the majority benefit from getting immunized. “Most side effects from vaccines are mild such as soreness, swelling or redness at the injection site,” Brandi explained. “Some vaccines are associated with fever, rash and achiness — these side effects are your body’s immune system responding and creating immunity to disease. Serious side effects are rare.”

Many vaccine-preventable illnesses remain a threat to your health. Vaccines are safe and effective at preventing serious disease, and should be part of your annual wellness check with your primary care provider.

Brandi was featured in the Fall 2022 issue of Monument Health Magazine. To learn more about Brandi, vaccination and the history of vaccines, click here.

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