These, along with the vaccine against tetanus diphtheria-pertussis vaccine (Tdap), are the most important vaccines for older adults.
An annual seasonal flu (influenza) vaccine is especially important for older adults, people with chronic health conditions, and pregnant women. The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that over 60 percent of seasonal flu-related hospitalizations occur in people 65 years and older.
Pneumococcal vaccines are recommended for all adults over 65 years old and for adults younger than 65 years who have certain medical conditions such as chronic lung disease or heart disease. In the U.S., more than 50,000 people die each year from pneumonia, making it one of the deadliest infectious diseases in the country. Yet less than two-thirds of adults 65 years and over have ever received a pneumococcal vaccination.
The pneumococcal vaccines protect against illnesses like meningitis (infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord) and bacteremia (blood infection). Two types of pneumococcal vaccines are available: pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23). PCV13 protects against 13 types and PPSV23 protects against 23 types. Both vaccines provide protection PCV13 also provides protection against pneumonia (lung infection). Your healthcare provider can determine which pneumonia vaccine you need and when.
To view more recommended vaccines, check out staywell.walgreens.com