Vaccination has been proven as an effective way to prevent illnesses such as influenza(flu), whooping cough (pertussis), and pneumonia. By increasing the number of immunized people, others are also protected by “herd immunity.”
Among vaccine-preventable diseases in adults, influenza has the greatest impact in the U.S. population.
- An average of 36,000 deaths and over 200,000 hospitalizations associated with influenza occur each year in the United States1-2
- The combination of influenza and pneumonia was the eighth leading cause of death among all persons in the United States in 2005, accounting for 63,000 deaths3
- The overall national economic burden of influenza-attributable illness for adults, age 18 years and above is $83.3 billion. Direct medical costs for influenza in adults totaled $8.7 billion including $4.5 billion for adult hospitalizations resulting from influenza-attributable illness4
- Influenza is also responsible for substantial indirect costs ($6.2 billion annually), mainly from lost productivity. Each year, among adults age 18 to 64 years, 17 million workdays are lost to influenza-related illness5 (http://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/implementation/topics/immunization.html)