Oops! You forgot something – up-to-date immunizations.
Adult Canadians are not being immunized routinely for life-saving, vaccine-preventable diseases, according to Dr. Vivien Brown, an adjunct associate professor of McMaster University's Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine who lectures extensively to doctors and other health care professionals across Canada.
The family physician said a national survey in 2006 found less than 47 per cent of adults were properly immunized for tetanus, with an "abysmal" 39 per cent of adults over 65 receiving the pneumococcal vaccine which protects against serious infections in the lungs, blood and brain.
"Although immunization might not prevent clinical illness in adults, it is clear it leads to decreased severity of illness and fewer deaths," Brown said. Her study appears in the December issue of the journal Canadian Family Physician.
Brown said physicians have the responsibility to educate and inform patients so that they can make good decisions on their own. However, doctors often do not have the time to run through a comprehensive preventive care checklist with each patient as they manage acute and chronic conditions. Prevention alone is estimated at taking up more than seven hours a day, she said.
But, Brown says, both doctors and patients can do a better job. "If we start to evaluate health by including immune status, we will be in a position to make better decisions, to order appropriate tests, and to have more complete preventive assessments."
She suggests a starting point in physicians' day-to-day practice is to "move immunization up from the bottom of the heap."
Patients also carry some responsibility, Brown said. "Patients also need to be aware of keeping track of their history of immunization. For example, when did they last have a tetanus shot…often given at a walk-in clinic or in the emergency department after trauma, and the doctor may not be aware of this situation. Patients tend to know their drugs and drug allergies and they need to be responsible about immunization records as well."
Dr. Vivien Brown may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org during the holiday season.
Veronica McGuire | EurekAlert!
Scientists use nanoparticle-delivered gene therapy to inhibit blinding eye disease in rodents
08.07.2020 | Johns Hopkins Medicine
Deconstructing glioblastoma complexity reveals its pattern of development
08.07.2020 | McGill University
New insight into the spin behavior in an exotic state of matter puts us closer to next-generation spintronic devices
Aside from the deep understanding of the natural world that quantum physics theory offers, scientists worldwide are working tirelessly to bring forth a...
Kiel physics team observed extremely fast electronic changes in real time in a special material class
In physics, they are currently the subject of intensive research; in electronics, they could enable completely new functions. So-called topological materials...
Solar cells based on perovskite compounds could soon make electricity generation from sunlight even more efficient and cheaper. The laboratory efficiency of these perovskite solar cells already exceeds that of the well-known silicon solar cells. An international team led by Stefan Weber from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz has found microscopic structures in perovskite crystals that can guide the charge transport in the solar cell. Clever alignment of these "electron highways" could make perovskite solar cells even more powerful.
Solar cells convert sunlight into electricity. During this process, the electrons of the material inside the cell absorb the energy of the light....
Empa researchers have succeeded in applying aerogels to microelectronics: Aerogels based on cellulose nanofibers can effectively shield electromagnetic radiation over a wide frequency range – and they are unrivalled in terms of weight.
Electric motors and electronic devices generate electromagnetic fields that sometimes have to be shielded in order not to affect neighboring electronic...
A promising operating mode for the plasma of a future power plant has been developed at the ASDEX Upgrade fusion device at Max Planck Institute for Plasma...
07.07.2020 | Event News
02.07.2020 | Event News
19.05.2020 | Event News
10.07.2020 | Life Sciences
10.07.2020 | Materials Sciences
10.07.2020 | Life Sciences