Immunization coverage outside the pediatric age is a challenge not only in Mexico, but around the world, laments Dr. Gloria Huerta, an inoculation expert, talking about the importance of completing the vaccination schedule for older adults.
Given this, he says, strategies are being adopted globally to achieve broad coverage of essential vaccines, ie those that prevent diseases affecting mortality among adults, mainly older adults.
The immunization schedule for the elderly in the country consists of three vaccines: pneumococcal polysaccharide, tetanus-diphtheria and seasonal influenza. The pneumococcal vaccine prevents pneumonia caused by pneumococcal bacteria, and the tetanus-diphtheria vaccine, as its name suggests, protects against tetanus and diphtheria.
However, there are other vaccines that, although not available in the public domain, help prevent other diseases, such as herpes zoster, whose main risk factor is aging.
In an interview with El Diario after a symposium on vaccines, Dr. Huerta stressed that 16 diseases are preventable through vaccination in adulthood, including hepatitis A and B, tetanus, pneumococcal disease, influenza, measles, , include chickenpox, human papilloma and diphtheria, herpes. Zoster.
“One of the things we now know about adult vaccination is that it also helps us to strengthen the immune system. By vaccinating ourselves throughout life, not just in childhood, these vaccination boosters will stimulate the immune system and allow us to reach adulthood and old age in a more resilient way and to have a better response capacity to certain harmful stimuli.
The expert emphasized that vaccination in adulthood helps reduce mortality from the diseases it protects against, helps reduce morbidity, and greatly strengthens the immune system.
However, vaccination coverage is still low among older adults. “In Mexico, coverage of the entire plan seen in the primer is 46% among adults. Even when it’s on Primer and we’re looking at them, we don’t have visibility on where to get the vaccine and which one to get.
“If you ask an adult what their card is, they will say which card? There is a primer for the elderly and yet, we do not have this coverage, which has always been a challenge, a challenge because of the myths that vaccination is exclusively pediatric,” Dr. Gloria Huerta says.- Ivan Canul a