Don’t Forget to Prioritize Immunizations
by Catherine Ernotte
The coronavirus has made us all step back from our usual routines especially with the closings that have and continue to happen. It is essential, however, that we remember to keep up to date with our immunizations. Immunizations are one of our primary care health services here at 26Health, which you may not have been aware of.
While 26Health has been largely known for mental health care, founder Dr. David Baker-Hargrove had a vision for “primary care for all” that has come to fruition and includes essential immunizations.
Even before 26Health was established, when Baker-Hargrove was running a private, LGBTQ+-friendly psychotherapy practice, “I had so many people who I was referring out for transgender medical health services,” he says.
That spawned an idea: why couldn’t Baker-Hargrove create a holistic environment that provided both mental health and primary care services? And why not expand the reach to intentionally include all patients in need of care, no matter their background or orientation?
Today, 26Health even offers pediatric primary care. We advise that you make sure that all of your children’s vaccines are current. At this time, the TDAP (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) vaccine is required for all students ages 11-12 years to return to school.
For the adults in your family, the TDAP is recommended every 10 years. If you can’t remember the last time you had this vaccine, it’s a good idea to get the booster. With more recent outbreaks of pertussis (popularly known as whooping cough), a current TDAP is recommended for anyone who will be around newborns. Pertussis may be fatal to babies. During pregnancy, the TDAP is usually given in the 3rd trimester. If you sustain an injury and forgot when or if you have had a recent TDAP one will be given to you. There is no harm to having a booster if it has been given in the last 10 years. If you injure yourself at home it is recommended to get your TDAP in 72 hours.
It is also that time of year when we begin to think about the flu and that dreaded flu shot. While influenza season is identified from October to April, the flu can occur all year round. The flu vaccine is developed to include the most anticipated strains of the flu for the upcoming season. Some years the vaccine works better than others because viruses can constantly mutate and therefore cannot be as specific, but it will still help protect you from getting more ill. Those at high risk of complications include young children, the elderly, and those with illness and are immune suppressed. Although the flu vaccine does not have a live virus and does not cause the flu, there can be side effects while your immune system is developing which may make you feel uncomfortable or ill.
As with any injection, you should consult your primary care provider at 26Health about avoiding immunizations if you have allergies or other medical reasons that raise concerns.
If you want more information regarding these and all immunizations, contact 26Health today.