Patients (and probably more than a few healthcare professionals) are all about the COVID-19 vaccine these days. However, the need for ongoing vigilance against other communicable diseases goes on. To that end, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed its recommended immunization schedule for adults for 2021. You can read the entire report here, but following are illness-specific changes that may be most relevant for the urgent care provider:

  • Influenza: The composition of several flu vaccines has been updated, as has some of the warning language (“If using an influenza vaccine other than RIV4 or ccIIV4, administer in medical setting under supervision of health care provider who can recognize and manage severe allergic reactions)”.
  • Zoster: With the zoster vaccine live (Zostavax) no longer available in the U.S., it has been removed from the schedule. However, the recombinant zoster vaccine Shingrix is still available as a two-dose regimen for adults 50 years of age and older.
  • HPV: The recommendation regarding pregnant patients has been changed from “delay until after pregnancy” to “vaccinate after pregnancy.”
  • Hepatitis B: ACIP has updated the recommendation for adults at risk for hepatitis B to read, “2, 3, or 4 doses, depending on vaccine or condition.” In addition, the hep B vaccine is now routinely recommended for adults younger than 60 years with diabetes. Shared decision-making is recommended for patients older than 60 with diabetes.
  • Meningococcal vaccine: The MenQuadfi (MenACWY-TT) vaccine has been added to all relevant sections of MenACWY vaccines. “For MenACWY booster doses, new text addresses special situations, including outbreaks.”
Don’t Let the Pandemic Distract You from the New ACIP Schedule
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