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Protect Your Health with Vaccinations

Vaccines can prevent or reduce your risk of developing deadly diseases. For example, human papillomavirus (HPV), a virus that causes over 27,000 cancer cases per year, can be prevented by vaccination. They’re remarkably effective and easy to get, too.

Adults should make sure they’re up to date on all their vaccinations. Some shots may remain effective your entire life, others need to be administered multiple times throughout your lifetime.

The flu
Thousands of Americans die every year from the flu and flu-related illnesses. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends everyone 6 months and older get a yearly flu shot. Good news for those with egg allergies: the flu vaccine is no longer made with eggs as of 2020.

The flu is not just a single virus, it’s multiple strains that change every year. That’s why it’s important you get the latest flu vaccine annually. It will protect you against most strains—if you do get sick, your symptoms will be less severe and you’ll recover faster.

Common types of adult vaccinations
You’re given a series of vaccinations as a child, but your immunity can fade over time and new diseases can develop. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices released a recommended adult immunization schedule that can give you a good idea of what vaccinations you may need. Here’s what they recommend:

  • Flu, one dose annually
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis (Tdap), one dose as an adult and then a booster every 10 years
  • Varicella (chickenpox), two doses if born in 1980 or later
  • Measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), one or two doses if born in 1957 or later
  • Herpes zoster (shingles), two doses for adults 50 years and older (recombinant vaccine) or one dose for adults 60 years and older (live vaccine)
  • HPV, two or three doses depending on your age when you received your first shot

Everyone is different, though. You should always consult with your doctor about what vaccinations are best for you. Since vaccines are preventive care, they come at no cost to you when visiting a Preferred provider. If you need to find a Preferred provider near you, be sure to use our National Doctor and Hospital Finder tool.