Why get immunized?
Vaccines have dramatically changed the landscape of infectious diseases. Diseases such as polio, tetanus, Hib, yellow fever and diphtheria – illnesses that have caused tremendous disability and death in the past (and still do in some parts of the world) – are rarely seen in the U.S. Having a highly vaccinated populations helps prevent infections from spreading and protects even those who aren’t vaccinated. Diseases such as the measles are still prevalent in many parts of the world and can be brought to the U.S. by unvaccinated travelers.
Immunization schedules are designed to protect individuals, especially young children, when they are most vulnerable to disease. Following the recommended vaccine schedule for babies and young children protects them against disease before they are likely to be exposed. Adults also should keep up on their vaccinations. Every year thousands of adults suffer serious illness, are hospitalized and even die from diseases for which vaccines are available, including influenza (flu), Hepatitis A and B, meningococcal disease (meningitis) and HPV – which can lead to cervical and other types of cancer. The Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE) has additional information and resources - including rules, reports and data and forms - about immunizations in this state.
We know there are many questions related to vaccines, their use and safety. It’s always wise to get the facts before you make a decision, especially when it comes to your health. Fortunately, evidence-based research tells us a lot about vaccines. The following are reliable sources of immunization-related information: