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The Importance of Immunizations

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There has been a lot of conversation, particularly in the last 10 years, regarding the safety of vaccinating our children.  This is due to some recent outbreaks of diseases that are unrelated to getting vaccinations. Let’s be clear vaccines are extremely safe and effective, and while no medical intervention is without risk, overwhelmingly the benefits of vaccinating your child are far greater than the risk of not.

This has become more true as the number of un-vaccinated children has grown. In some communities, upwards of 30% of children are un-vaccinated or under-vaccinated, thus increasing the risk of diseases that have not been prevalent in years presenting themselves.  No vaccine works in 100% of children, but through a mechanism called “herd immunity” these children are protected by having the vast majority of the population around them vaccinated. As the percentage of vaccinated individuals in any community drops, the risks increase for these non-responders, or those who cannot receive a vaccine, increases dramatically. Thus, outbreaks occur.

Immunization, or vaccination, helps 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 co-workers to stay up to date on their shots.  Yes, that means you! Even if you never get the flu you can carry the virus with you and infect others. It is important as a work community that we’re encouraging others to get the appropriate vaccinations for the betterment of everyone.  Healthy is happy!


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