November 11, 2002
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Having surgery and over the age of 65? If so, you had better get your flu shot advices the American Society of PeriAnesthesia Nurses (ASPAN)

Cherry Hill, New Jersey – November 11, 2002 -- Flu shots and pneumonia vaccinations have been shown to decrease the likelihood of pneumonia, flu, and infections in elderly patients and in those having surgery. New research published in the Journal of PeriAnesthesia Nursing, however, indicates that immunization rates in the elderly remain well below the nationally recommended goal of 90%. The study, conducted by Martha Laney MSN, RN, BC, and Elizabeth W. Bayley PhD, RN, showed that only 57% of elderly patients seen prior to surgery had been immunized for pneumonia, and only 76% of the patients had been immunized for the flu. Medicare covers the costs of both of these vaccinations, and they have been proven effective in preventing many common postoperative complications. If you are having surgery in the future, please discuss the need for these vaccines with your healthcare provider.

The American Society of PeriAnesthesia Nurses (ASPAN) is the international professional specialty nursing organization representing the interest of over 40,000 nurses practicing in all phases of ambulatory surgery, pain management, preanesthesia and post anesthesia care.

For information contact ASPAN
877-737-9696, ext. 15

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