Immunizations play important role for all ages


August 1, 2012

OHIO VALLEY — Immunizations are not just for children.

It is a typical scenario this time of year for parents to travel to their local health department with their children to make sure they have all the required immunizations before the start of the school year. But following these required vaccinations as children, many perhaps do not stay as diligent when it comes to protecting themselves from certain infections and diseases.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), August is National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM), and those working with local health departments are on a constant patrol to use this time of the year to help remind parents about back to school immunizations, as well as reminding college students to be up-to-date on vaccinations before moving into dormitories, and preparing their local citizens for the upcoming flu season.

According to the CDC, the specific immunizations needed by adults include various factors, such as age, lifestyle, high-risk conditions, type and locations of travel, and previous immunizations. The most common of course is a vaccination for the flu, which is recommended once a year. Other immunizations for adults include protection against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, shingles, pneumococcal, HPV, Varicella (Chickenpox), Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), Meningococcal, Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B.

Common vaccinations for pre-teens and teens also include meningococcal, tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, HPV and influenza. According to the CDC, the HPV virus also helps protect both boys and girls from different types of cancer, specifically cervical cancer in young women. Vaccinations for children also include Hepatitis A and B, Rotavirus, Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, Pneumococcal, Inactivated poliovirus, Influenza, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella.

It was reported the Mason County Health Department participates in the Vaccine For Children Program, which provide vaccinations for children from two months through the age of 18 who are uninsured, underinsured or Medicaid recipients. Adult immunizations available at no cost include tetanus and pneumonia vaccine. Hepatitis B vaccine is also offered at the cost of the vaccine only.

The Gallia County Health Department reportedly offers the following vaccinations: DTaP , Hepatitis B , HIB , IPV (Polio), Menactra, MMR, Prevnar (Pneumococcal), Td , Tdap, Varicella (Chickenpox), Hepatitis A, HPV and Rotavirus. It was also reported that vaccinations are provided at no charge for children 18 years old and younger who are residents of Ohio.

The Meigs County Health Department also offers low cost Tetanus/Diphtheria Immunizations for adults, and Hepatitis B and Hepatitis A vaccines for a fee. It was also reported that walk-in clinics are normally held every Tuesday from 9-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m., and that no one will be denied by not being able to pay.

For more on the recommended schedule of vaccinations for any age group, visit For more information receiving the immunizations, contact your local health department at the following: Gallia County Health Department at 740-441-2018; Mason County Health Department at 304-675-3050; Meigs County Health Department at 740-992-6626.