Immunizations now more important than ever

August 03, 2020

You and your family members need protection from serious diseases, even during a pandemic.

Everyone — from infants to older adults — needs protection from vaccine-preventable diseases. Unfortunately, stay-at-home and shelter-in-place orders in recent months have resulted in fewer medical checkups and a reduction in vaccinations being administered.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) emphasizes the importance of maintaining immunization services to protect individuals and communities from vaccine-preventable diseases and outbreaks, even during our current health crisis. Routine vaccinations will be critical to reducing the burden of respiratory illness during the upcoming influenza season, helping to prevent illnesses that lead to unnecessary hospitalizations and further strain on the healthcare system.

Well-child visits and vaccinations are essential services that help protect children and adolescents from a number of serious diseases, including chicken pox, measles, mumps, and whooping cough. When we reach adulthood, immunizations are recommended to guard against infections and diseases like tetanus, influenza, and pneumonia.

National Immunization Awareness Month, observed in August, is a reminder that you have the power to protect yourself, your family, and those around you against many serious diseases. How? By getting the recommended vaccines on schedule.

If you have medical coverage* through the Board of Pensions, you can find a list of recommended immunizations through all stages of life in the Preventive Schedule. These are covered at 100 percent (no deductibles, copays, or copayments apply) when you use network providers.

Compare the recommended immunizations in the Preventive Schedule against your medical records to see if you and your family members are up to date. If not, contact your physician’s office for information about their current practices for office visits and how you can safely access this essential preventive care.

Additionally, be sure to check the CDC’s Schedule Changes & Guidance for up-to-date vaccination recommendations during the COVID-19 pandemic, along with 2020 immunization schedule changes for children and adults.

*Those enrolled in Triple-S, GeoBlue, or the Medicare Supplement Plan also have preventive care benefits under their plans, but coverage details may differ. Consult your plan’s provisions for details.

Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.