September 10, 2014
Deerfield, IL – Vaccines aren’t just for infants; teens and young adults benefit greatly from a number of vaccines that prevent various cancers and other illnesses. This is the message of a new film from PBS/NOVA, Vaccines – Calling the Shots, featuring Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine (SAHM) member and Fellow Amy Middleman, MD, MPH, MSEd, FSAHM, an expert in vaccines used to prevent illnesses in adolescence and young adulthood. Premiering on September 10, the film aims to dispel misinformation about vaccines and encourages parents to look at the evidence supporting the need for immunization. SAHM recommends four key vaccines for the teen and young adult population: the HPV vaccine; Tdap for tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis; the flu vaccine; and MCV4 to prevent meningococcal disease.
Dr. Middleman is Chief of Adolescent Medicine at Oklahoma University’s Children’s Physicians Adolescent Medicine Clinic. She is a longtime SAHM member and Fellow of the Society, serving as a member of SAHM’s Clinical Services Subcommittee on Vaccinations. She also represents SAHM on the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).
“The most important thing I want teens and their parents to know about vaccines is that the risk of harm from vaccines has been scientifically shown to be minuscule, and vaccines save lives. We now can protect our youth from diseases including cancer — who doesn't want that protection for his or her child?” said Dr. Middleman. “It’s why I was eager to get involved with this program.” In the NOVA special, viewers will watch as Dr. Middleman consults with teen patients and their parents on the safety and effectiveness of the HPV vaccine, which protects against the cancer-causing human papillomavirus.
Adolescent medicine physicians specialize in providing comprehensive general health care to adolescents and young adults from age 10-23. SAHM members in a variety of disciplines are committed to improving the physical and psychosocial health and well-being of all adolescents through advocacy, clinical care, health promotion, health service delivery, and research.
Parents seeking a professional specializing in adolescent health can use SAHM’s free “Find an Adolescent Health Specialist” search engine.
To obtain more information about SAHM or immunizations for adolescents, visit www.adolescenthealth.org or call SAHM headquarters, +1-847-753-5226.
The Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine is a multidisciplinary organization of health professionals who are committed to advancing the health and well-being of adolescents. Through education, research, clinical services and advocacy activities, members of SAHM strive to enhance public and professional awareness of adolescent health issues among families, educators, policy makers, youth-serving organizations, students who are considering a health career, as well as other health professionals. Learn more at www.adolescenthealth.org.