WASHINGTON, Feb. 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Vaccines play an important role in keeping adults healthy and potential changes to the recommendations for vaccines for adults age 65+ that ward off pneumococcal disease are a bad idea according to a just released poll.
Beginning February 12th, RetireSafe, a leading non-profit dedicated to educating and advocating on behalf of America's seniors conducted a poll of more than 1100 older Americans who identify as concerned about healthcare during retirement, 98% of whom are over the age of 50 and 78% who are 65 and older.
The poll looked at the prevalence of vaccinations and asked seniors about potential changes that are being considered by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), a panel of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The panel is considering changing the current recommendation for a pneumococcal vaccination for adults aged 65+. Such a change could mean a reduction in the number of people who are vaccinated, and how both public and private insurance plans would provide coverage for the vaccines.
Pneumococcal disease remains a serious health issue for older Americans. According to the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases, pneumococcal disease strikes nearly a million people each year in the U.S. Of those, nearly 18,000 adults 65 and older die as a result of the disease.
Among respondents, just 62% had been vaccinated against pneumococcal disease. Thirty-three percent say they have contracted the disease at some point in their lives.
Over 64% felt that if the CDC limited the recommendation to receive the pneumonia vaccine, it would pose a risk to the health of seniors.
Almost 72% wanted RetireSafe to speak out in opposition to the CDC limiting vaccination recommendations.
"The numbers are clear, adults are vaccinating against pneumococcal when they turn 65—likely on the advice of their doctors," said Thair Phillips, President of RetireSafe. "By changing the pneumococcal vaccine recommendations, doctors may be less likely to discuss the need for the vaccines---and the number of those older adults who will be protected could drop. In the midst of the resurgence of diseases like measles, why would we make it harder for any American to be vaccinated?"
ACIP is scheduled to meet at CDC headquarters in Atlanta this week, and the pneumococcal recommendation is slated to be discussed.
As a grass-roots, non-profit organization formed in 1991, RetireSafe's mission is to educate and advocate on behalf of mature Americans on issues including Social Security, Medicare, health, safe retirement and financial well-being.
Contact: Mark Gibbons
Email: [email protected]