The other vaccines: Moffat health leaders urge routine child/teen vaccinations in post stay-at-home world
So much has been said about the COVID-19 vaccines, which leading health organizations determine are safe and effective, and one of which is fully FDA approved. But during the politicized controversy about that life-saving vaccine, another vaccination issue has arisen in the minds of healthcare providers and experts.
Routine vaccinations — childhood and regularly updated shots and boosters like tetanus, measles, mumps, etcetera — aren’t any less important during a pandemic for another virus. In fact, they’re arguably more important.
“Parents and caregivers, really work on getting children and people you’re responsible for up to date on routine vaccines,” said Dr. Allan Reishus, a member of Memorial Regional Hospital’s board of trustees. “Measles, you go too long, it’s a problem. Tetanus shots, too, and flu shots are really important this fall. Talk to your primary care provider, your nurse practitioner and get up to date.”
Reishus said that, as stay-at-home orders and other influences kept folks home or trying to avoid doctors’ offices, some folks have missed regular vaccination appointments, and that those diseases aren’t anything to mess around with.
“It’s past time to make sure you’re up to date on all the standard vaccines,” he said.
Measles as an example, Reishus said, can have a huge impact on even a partially unvaccinated group of young people.
“It can come on very quickly,” he said. “Say a baby doesn’t get a measles shot, or a number of babies in the community. Then you have them in a childcare center and it can explode in cases. Be it measles or rubella or any of the others. These are preventable diseases, and these are known vaccines that have been around 20, 30, even 40 years. Don’t skip them.”
Moffat County Public Health provides free immunizations to uninsured and underinsured infants, children and adults. Information can be found at https://moffatcounty.colorado.gov/government/departments/public-health-office.
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