Health Team

Vaccinations: They Are Not Just for Kids

Posted March 28, 2008 5:15 p.m. EDT
Updated March 28, 2008 7:48 p.m. EDT

— Surveys show adults are not getting vaccinated for preventable illnesses, causing thousands of people to die needlessly.

Dr. Karen Lewis, of the Arizona Department of Health Service, said it’s better to prevent infections than to try to cure them.

Lewis should know. As a child, she got Hepatitis A.

“Not wanting to be ostracized, I joined the kids in play and quickly got infected with the Hepatitis A,” Lewis rhymed.

Up to 5,000 Americans die each year from a disease that could have been prevented by a vaccine.

Lewis said it is hard for adults to stay up to date on vaccines they have been given.

"I think a lot of us get caught up that it's just little kids,” said Kortney Manwaring, who suffered from whooping cough, a disease preventable by a vaccine.

George Sorenson was vaccinated for shingles, though he knows many adults have not gotten vaccinated for the disease.

“I call it the ostrich syndrome. Bury your head in the sand and nothing will happen,” he said.