Yes - once again - the topic is vaccines.
But this time I am not speaking about you or your children getting a flu vaccine – I am talking about my annual "poke." And it is not just me getting my annual influenza vaccine. All of us working at Franciscan Physician Network - Crown Point Pediatric Health Center have gotten this vaccine to protect us, our families and our patients.
Our health center is part of the Franciscan Physician Network and Franciscan Alliance. This is the second year our health system has required the influenza vaccine for all of its employees. The CDC, the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and many other medical groups have strongly recommended that healthcare workforce personnel get the influenza vaccine annually. Prior to this preventative health campaign less than half of eligible people in the medical workforce were vaccinated.
You can have confidence that your child is being seen in an environment where we want to protect or “cocoon” your child against influenza.
Know also that we at Franciscan Physician Network - Crown Point Pediatric Health Center are aware of the increasing rate of pertussis/whooping cough cases. Many of us have received a booster vaccine against pertussis. This is not mandatory for our practice, but again we know the benefit in this vaccination. We know many parents are concerned about exposure to illnesses at the doctor office.
In my final point I want to clear up some confusion. I have received a few questions from parents about the fungal meningitis outbreak. Know that this type of meningitis is NOT contagious. Also – there is no link of this tragic situation of product contamination to any of the childhood vaccines we use. We are committed to the proper storage and safety of all of our vaccines.
Please consider joining me and others in protecting our children - go get your flu shot today.
Dr. Lisa Gold is a pediatrician practicing in Crown Point, Indiana, at the Franciscan Physician Network - Crown Point Pediatric Health Center.