First of all, congratulations! It has been a long and difficult year for everyone, and finally having some protection against COVID-19 feels good. We still have a ways to go though, and since we are still learning about how the vaccines will affect the spread of the virus, it is important that everyone one keeps taking precautions – such as wearing a mask, staying 6 feet apart from others, and avoiding crowds or poorly ventilated indoor spaces. The CDC has also provided some recommendations to help with decision making in daily activities for people who have been vaccinated. The first thing [...]
Dialysis Patients and COVID-19: Should I get the vaccine? If I get the virus, should I take the antibody treatment?
Written by: Alan S. Kliger, M.D., Clinical Professor of Medicine, Yale School of Medicine, and Co-Chair, American Society of Nephrology (ASN) COVID-19 Response Team. As 2021 unfolds, the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Dialysis patients continue to isolate at home, socially distance from family and friends, use face coverings and precautions traveling to dialysis and in the unit. How will this pandemic end? Many patients have important questions about the new vaccines and about new treatments for the infection. First, some facts about the vaccines: What is a vaccine? An injected vaccine is designed to stimulate your immune system to produce antibodies that [...]
By Arthur Allen, Kaiser Health News Pfizer’s announcement on Monday that its COVID-19 shot appears to keep nine in 10 people from getting the disease sent its stock price rocketing. Many news reports described the vaccine as if it were our deliverance from the pandemic, even though few details were released. There was certainly something to crow about: Pfizer’s vaccine consists of genetic material called mRNA encased in tiny particles that shuttle it into our cells. From there, it stimulates the immune system to make antibodies that protect against the virus. A similar strategy is employed in other leading COVID-19 vaccine [...]
Flu season is approaching, and it is just as important to get your shot as ever before. People with chronic kidney disease are more susceptible to developing severe flu complications, due to a weakened immune system. The COVID-19 pandemic adds some complexities to flu season this year as there is risk for infection from either illness. Although there is no vaccine available for COVID-19, you can lower your risk for getting the flu by getting the flu vaccine. In fact, the flu vaccine prevented 39 percent of flu cases among people that received the vaccine last year. In addition, the types [...]
We all need shots (vaccines) to help protect us from serious diseases. This protection is called immunization. To help our community stay safe, DPC Education Center is proudly participating in National Immunization Awareness Month. Shots can prevent serious diseases like the flu, measles, and pneumonia. They can also prevent some infections. This is especially important for people with kidney disease, as they are at a higher risk for getting an infection, which can be fatal. It’s important to know which shots you need and when to get them. Everyone age 6 months and older needs to get a flu vaccine every [...]
The DPC Education Center invites people living with chronic kidney disease (CKD), end-stage renal disease (ESRD), their families and professional staff to join us for our monthly webinars. You can also join by phone or view the recordings online at a later time. The webinars are planned for the fourth Thursday of the month at 2 p.m. Eastern time zone, except for November and December when they will be held during the third week of the month. You can download monthly webinar fliers to share with others and/or register for webinars at www.dpcedcenter.org/news-events/education-webinars. Join by phone by calling 1-877- 399-5186 and [...]
Flu season doesn’t officially end until May, and typically we see the flu “peak” around this time. However, this year the virus is especially harmful and active with cases still increasing. If you haven’t already received a flu vaccine, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends you still get immunized to decrease your chances of becoming infected with this year’s virus. As kidney disease patients, you are especially susceptible to catching the flu. It is important to take precautionary steps to prevent infection. Learn more about this year’s virus and information on the vaccine by visiting the CDC’s flu hub: www.cdc.gov/flu People [...]
With flu season upon us, it is especially important for you as a chronic kidney disease patient to take precautions to avoid infection. If you are also diabetic, your risk of being hospitalized because of flu increases dramatically. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released comprehensive guidelines about avoiding the flu and staying well during flu season. First and foremost, the CDC recommends the flu vaccine for everyone 6 months and older unless told otherwise by a healthcare professional. It is important to note, you cannot get the flu from the flu shot. If you do contract the flu, one [...]
While it feels like summer just started, the Centers for Disease Control has already begun preparation for the next flu season. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) voted that live attenuate influenza vaccine (LAIV) also known as the “nasal spray” flu vaccine, should not be used during the 2016-2017 flu season. ACIP is a panel of immunization experts that advise the CDC. Their decision to vote against using LAIV is based on data showing poor or relatively lower effectiveness from 2013 to 2016. In late May, preliminary data on the effectiveness of LAIVE among children ages 2 through 17 [...]
With flu season starting, it’s important to protect yourself and others from getting sick. The Kidney Community Emergency Response Program (KCER) offers a few tips for influenza preparedness. Suggestions include avoiding close contact with people who are sick, staying home if you are ill and practicing proper hygiene to prevent the spread of germs. More information can be found on the KCER website.