Immunizations for Adults
These recommendations are established by the listed resources only and not by GEHA. The recommendations are intended as general guidelines only. Other resources may offer different recommendations. Please consult your health care provider to determine which immunizations you need. Be sure to check your GEHA Plan Brochure for coverage information on all screenings, exams and immunizations.
Recommended immunization schedule for adults
- Age 19 to 49: You need a dose yearly if you have a chronic health problem,* are a health care worker or have close contact with certain individuals.*
- Age 50 to 64 and Age 65 & older: You need a dose every fall (or winter).
- Age 19 to 49: You need one to two doses if you have certain chronic medical conditions.*
- Age 50 to 64: You need one to two doses if you have certain chronic medical conditions.*
- Age 65 & older: You need one dose at age 65 (or older) if you've never been vaccinated. You may also need a second dose.*
Tetanus, diphtheria, Pertussis (Td, Tdap)
- Age 19 to 49, Age 50 to 64 and Age 65 & older: If you haven't had at least three tetanus-and-diphtheria-containing shots some time in your life, you need to get them now. Start with dose No. 1, followed by dose No. 2 in 1 month and dose No. 3 in 6 months. All adults need Td booster doses every 10 years. If you're younger than 65 years and haven't had pertussis-containing vaccine as an adult, one of the doses that you receive should have pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine in it - known as Tdap. Be sure to consult your health professional if you have a deep or dirty wound.
Hepatitis B (HepB)
- Age 19 to 49, Age 50 to 64 and Age 65 & older: You need this vaccine if you have a specific risk factor for hepatitis B virus infection.* The vaccine is given as a three-dose series (dose No. 1 now, followed by dose No. 2 in 1 month and dose No. 3, usually given 5 months later).
Hepatitis A (HepA)
- Age 19 to 49, Age 50 to 64 and Age 65 & older: You need this vaccine if you have a specific risk factor for hepatitis A virus infection.* The vaccine is given as two doses, 6 to 18 months apart.
Measles, Mumps, Rebella (MMR)
- Age 19 to 49: You need at least one dose of MMR if you were born in 1957 or later. You may also need a second dose.*
- Age 19 to 49, Age 50 to 64 and Age 65 & older: If you've never had chickenpox, you should get vaccinated now (two doses, 1 to 2 months apart).
- Age 19 to 49, Age 50 to 64 and Age 65 & older: If you are a young adult going to college and plan to live in a dormitory, you need to get vaccinated against meningococcal disease. People with certain medical conditions should also receive this vaccine.
*Consult your health care professional to determine your level of risk for infection and your need for this vaccine.
Do you travel outside the United States? If so, you may need additional vaccines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) operates an international traveler's health information line. Call (800) 232-4636 or visit CDC's website at www.cdc.gov/travel for information about your destination. You may also consult a travel clinic or your health care professional.
Source: The Immunization Action Coalition (www.immunize.org)