As we age, our immune systems weaken over time and this increases the risk for certain diseases such as pneumonia, shingles, and the flu. Vaccines are an important way we can help prevent or reduce the risk of these infections and their related complications. Kohll’s pharmacists are on the forefront keeping up with the latest vaccination information. Additionally, the Kohll’s pharmacies normally have these vaccinations on hand.
Pneumococcal infections caused by a bacteria called streptococcus pneumoniae can range from ear and sinus infections to pneumonia and bloodstream infections. Pneumococcal infections are common in young children, but older adults are at the greatest risk of serious illness and death. Vaccines are the best way to help prevent pneumococcal disease.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that young children, older adults, and other people with certain medical conditions or risk factors receive the pneumococcal vaccine. The CDC has recently updated their recommendations to include Prevnar 20 and Vaxneuvance vaccines which hit the market in 2021. Adults who have never received a pneumonia vaccine should receive Prevnar 20 (PCV20) or Vaxneuvance (PCV15) if they are 65 years or older or are 19-65 years old with certain medical conditions (chronic heart disease, smokers, immunocompromising conditions, etc.). If the Vaxneuvance (PCV15) vaccine is given, then it should be followed at least a year later by the Pneumovax (PPSV23) vaccine. If you have already received the Prevnar 13 vaccine, it should be followed by the Pneumovax (PPSV23) at least a year later.
About 1 in 3 people in the U.S. will develop shingles, also known as herpes zoster, in their lifetime. Shingles is a painful rash that can lead to serious complications such as nerve pain, known as postherpetic neuralgia, that can last months or years after the rash goes away. The risk of getting shingles and having serious complications increases as you age.
The CDC recommends that adults 50 years and older receive two doses of the newer shingles vaccine called Shingrix to help prevent shingles and its complications. Shingrix recently was approved for those 19 to 49 years and old for people who are immunocompromised.People who have received the older shingles vaccine called Zostavax should receive Shingrix as it is much more effective (more than 90%) at preventing shingles and related complications. Even if you have had shingles in the past, you should still receive the shingles vaccine as shingles can recur.
Other Recommended Vaccines
In addition to the pneumonia and shingles vaccines, an annual or yearly seasonal flu (influenza) vaccine is recommended. If you are 65 years or older, ask your pharmacist about getting the high-dose or adjuvant flu shot that produces a stronger immune response and better protection against influenza viruses. The tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap) vaccine called Boostrix is also recommended every 10 years.
If you have questions about what vaccine(s) are right for you, talk to your local Kohll’s pharmacist who will review your immunizations and get you up to date on your vaccines.
All Kohll’s pharmacies have a collaborative agreement on file with the state that allows them to administer these vaccines without a prescription order from your physician. They make it easy for you to stay healthy!
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Pneumococcal disease.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Shingles (herpes zoster).
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). What vaccines are recommended for you.