Can Individuals With a Chronic Disease Be Vaccinated Against Pneumococcal Infections?
Individuals with chronic diseases can and should be vaccinated against pneumococcal infections. This is because chronic diseases such as diabetes can impair immune system response⁵. This means a higher risk of infection leading to hospitalizations, severe symptoms, and slower recovery.
Aside from chronic diseases, excessive consumption of tobacco and alcohol can also increase the risk of pneumococcal infection. For active smokers and heavy drinkers, it is recommended to get vaccinated even without the presence of chronic diseases1, 3.
Because chronic diseases are often lifelong conditions, vaccines are cost-effective because they provide immunity for many years with just one dose⁶. In addition to getting vaccinated with the pneumonia vaccine, consider getting your annual flu shot as well as any booster shots for tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Td/Tdap)⁷. Talk to your doctor about your vaccination history and status during your next appointment.
Yes, getting the pneumonia vaccine for chronic disease or immunocompromised individuals is safe. In fact, getting vaccinated should be a priority for these groups of people.
The pneumonia vaccine can prevent or reduce the severity of pneumococcal infections with just one jab. However, the vaccine works best when combined with proper intake of maintenance medications and a healthy lifestyle.
In addition, consider getting your entire family vaccinated so that, together, you can stay healthy and protected.