Lifewatch: Adult vaccines

Reported by Claire Hosmann - email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

CHICAGO, IL (WECT) - In the last few years, at least three new adult vaccines have been released, but there aren't many adults lining up to get the shots.

Most people were immunized as babies to prevent about a dozen of serious diseases.  Now experts say there are up to 8 vaccines just for adults.

"Many adults don't feel like they're at risk or that they're vulnerable for these diseases. They think about vaccines being for children. But there are many old and new vaccines that are recommended for adults," said Dr. Julie Morita with Chicago Department of Public Health.

Morita says in the last three years, the government has recommended three new adult vaccines: shingles if you're over 60, whooping cough, and HPV for younger women.

"Pertussis or whooping cough is the most recently recommended," said Morita.

The CDC said less than 10% of the adult population is up to date on immunizations.

Some adults may not be getting the shots because some insurance companies don't cover the vaccines that can cost up to $200.

While federal programs fund shots for kids, there's no such thing for adults.