Actress Gabrielle Union-Wade has partnered with the nonprofit Vaccinate Your Family and the pharmaceutical company Merck to raise awareness about millions of missed vaccines.
“So, for Dwayne and I and the other adults in our household, we all had to look at our own health history talk to our doctors, and Dwayne and I are fully vaccinated,” said the mother and activist.
Protection from diseases like measles and HPV fell sharply during the pandemic.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some vaccine rates were down as much as 70% last year among the recommended age groups, from babies to teens. Oder children missed more doses.
Disease outbreaks are a concern among families, but also in communities when schools open in the fall.
“Any one of them could strike at any time, and when a disease sees an opportunity, sadly, it really has no boundaries. It doesn't care if you're an older adult, an adult, a child, or an infant. We have many families that come to vaccinate that have devastating stories of loss,” said Amy Pisani, Executive Director of Vaccinate Your Family.
The campaign encourages families to check with their doctors to see if they missed any vaccines.
The American Academy of Pediatrics and other health organizations say it's safe to get regular vaccines with COVID-19 shots.
“Again, don't skip. It could really lead to some pretty terrible consequences,” Pisani.
“And I just encourage everyone, don’t listen to social media. Listen to your doctor, listen to the science, listen to facts and then make the best decision for your family,” said Union-Wade.