Less than half of adults in the US receive most vaccines recommended for them, in part because awareness is low. Since the declaration of the COVID-19 pandemic and public health measures to slow the spread of the disease in the US, adult immunization rates have further declined. Ordering rates across adult vaccines among healthcare practices have dropped an average of 62 percent.
Most illnesses, hospitalizations, disability and deaths from vaccine-preventable illnesses occur among adults. An estimated average of 50,000 Americans die of vaccine-preventable diseases each year – with adults, and especially older adults, disproportionally impacted. Thousands more suffer serious health problems that could have been prevented with recommended immunizations.
Now, more than ever before, it is important to fully utilize the vaccines we do have to prevent the spread of disease. A national survey of 3,000 US adults ages 50-79 and 300 US primary care physicians, conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of GSK, found:
• Most physicians say that getting recommended vaccines is one of the most important things older adults can do to stay healthy
• Most adults ages 50-79 say vaccines are important to maintain their health, but many have never heard of or are unfamiliar with specific vaccines recommended for their age group
• The COVID-19 pandemic has increased awareness among adults about the importance of vaccination and made some more likely to get at least one of the recommended vaccines for adults
• Most adults in this age group say they need more information about vaccines
Adults ages 50 and older may need a number of vaccines, based on their age, underlying medical conditions, lifestyle, prior vaccinations, and other considerations. Recommended adult vaccines protect against diseases like flu, shingles, pneumococcal disease, hepatitis, pertussis and tetanus. The US spends about $26.5 billion annually treating four major vaccine-preventable diseases (influenza, pneumococcal disease, shingles, and pertussis) among US adults 50 years and older.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about all CDC-recommended vaccines needed that you may have missed during recent stay-at-home orders. For more information, visit www.broughtbyvaccines.com.
Dr. Len Friedland, Vice President and Director, Scientific Affairs and Public Health, Vaccines, GSK to learn more about the survey results and resources where your audience can learn more about CDC recommended adult vaccines. He will be joined alternately by [CONFIRM FLU PATIENT] who lost [LOVED ONE] to flu and [CONFIRM SHINGLES PATIENT], who experienced shingles.
For more information go to www.broughtbyvaccines.com
MORE ABOUT DR. LEN FRIEDLAND:
Dr. Len Friedland is Vice President and Director, Scientific Affairs and Public Health, Vaccines, at GSK. He is also a licensed pediatrician in the state of Pennsylvania. Dr. Friedland has held many positions in clinical research and development with GSK since 2003, specializing in infectious disease vaccination. Prior to his work at GSK, Dr. Friedland was Division Chief, Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Temple University School of Medicine. Dr. Friedland studied medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and conducted his residency in pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and his fellowship in pediatric emergency medicine at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, also in Philadelphia. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the past Alternate Industry Representative to the FDA Vaccines and Related Biologics Product Advisory Committee, the current Alternate Industry Representative to the FDA Allergenic Products Advisory Committee and the Industry Representative Member on the Department of Health and Human Services National Vaccine Advisory Committee. He has published over 50 peer reviewed articles as well as book chapters on healthcare and vaccination topics during his career.