The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) said it mailed the latest information and resources on immunizations and a full-color laminated immunization schedule that includes adult, adolescent, child and catch-up information to family physicians.
In addition to the schedules, the mailing included guidance on discussing infant immunizations with parents, AAFP said in a release. The immunization schedule was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and incorporated information provided by the AAFP and other medical groups.
AAFP Health of the Public and Science Division Medical Director Jennifer Frost told AAFP News about the current misconceptions regarding vaccines. Many patients have never experienced a vaccine-preventable disease and do not appreciate the importance of immunizations.
"And if their value isn't appreciated, it's a lot easier to listen to those who promote false information," Frost told AAFP News. "As physicians, it's our job to inform our patients of the facts, and this includes the life-saving value and overall safety of immunizations."
A recent outbreak in Minnesota resulted in 58 reported cases of measles between April 11 and May 15. Forty-nine of the cases occurred in the Somali population, who had been discouraged from immunizing due to the misinformation about the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine causing autism.
"Once measles begins to spread in unvaccinated populations, it can be very difficult to stop," Minnesota Department of Health's Infectious Disease Epidemiology Director Kris Ehresmann said in a release. "We would not be surprised if we saw additional cases in other parts of the state where there are clusters of unvaccinated people before this is over."