Over the past 50 years vaccinations have saved more lives in Canada than any other medical intervention and each year prevents over 2 million deaths worldwide. It is recommended that children start a vaccination schedule at two months of age, but did you know adults need vaccinations too?
Vaccines help to build immunity against communicable diseases that your body has trouble fighting on its own. They do this by teaching your immune system to recognize diseases and build up antibodies to lower your chances of getting them and/or the complications related to those diseases. Vaccines are developed in accordance with the highest standards and are continually monitored by Health Canada for safety and effectiveness.
Some adult vaccines are needed to boost immunity received from childhood immunization. Other vaccines may be required due to risks resulting from travel, occupation, underlying illness, lifestyle, injury or age. By keeping up to date with vaccines, adults can prevent the spread of disease to those who cannot be immunized, or those who are not optimally protected by the vaccines they already received. These include: babies, young children, pregnant women, and people with certain medical conditions such as those who have weakened immunity.
At a minimum, adults should receive a tetanus/diphtheria (Td) booster every 10 years (5 to 10 years for wound management), get their influenza vaccine every year, and get a tetanus/diphtheria/acellular pertussis vaccine (Tdap) once over the age of 18 and in every pregnancy. Seniors should also get a pneumococcal 23 vaccine when they turn 65 or sooner if they have certain underlying medical conditions.
There may be other vaccines you can access that are covered by the Government of Saskatchewan or could purchase on your own. For more information on vaccinations, call your local public health office, speak to your health care provider or Immunize Canada
Vaccinations save lives.