New Recommendations for Pneumococcal Vaccine

VaccineRecently new recommendations have been made for the use of pneumococcal (pneumonia) vaccines in those age 65 years and older.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with the Lincoln County Health Department (LCHD) now routinely recommend an additional pneumococcal vaccine to help prevent bacterial illnesses like pneumonia, a serious lung infection.  “Pneumococcal infections can be hard to treat because some types are resistant to antibiotics,” said Mindy Schwarz, Public Health Nurse for Lincoln County Health Department.  “This makes prevention through vaccination even more important.”

There are two pneumococcal vaccines available, the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) and the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13).  Previously most people received one shot of PPSV23 around age 65; now the recommendations are to receive both the PPSV23 and PCV13. 

These vaccines are not given at the same visit.  It is preferred that the PCV13 vaccine be given first followed by the PPSV23 6-12 months later.  However, most people age 65 years and older have already had the PPSV23 so they would only need the PCV13 vaccine which should be given at least 1 year after the PPSV23 vaccine.

Most Medicare Plans do not cover both pneumococcal vaccines.  Due to this the Lincoln County Health Department is able to offer the PCV13 vaccine to those who may need it for $10.00.  The Lincoln County Health Department will also be offering a convenient walk-in clinic the second Tuesday of each month from 12:00 p.m.-1:00 p.m.  No appointments needed, while supplies last.

Please talk with your healthcare provider or call the Lincoln County Health Department at 715-536-0307 for more information on these vaccines.

 

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