Adult Immunization Schedule


How often

Disease prevented

Who needs it


Every year

Flu. This can be especially dangerous to elderly adults or people with immune disorders.

All adults

Tetanus, diphtheria (Td); or Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap)*

One dose of Tdap, then one dose of Td as a booster every 10 years

Tetanus (lockjaw), a disease that causes muscles to spasm

Diphtheria, an infection that causes fever, weakness, and breathing problems

Pertussis, also known as whooping cough. This is a highly contagious disease that can cause serious illness.

All adults

*This vaccine should be given during each pregnancy no matter how many years since the last vaccine. The vaccine increases protection for your newborn. A newborn is too young to get the vaccine, but at the highest risk for severe illness and death from pertussis.

Varicella (Var)**

One series of 2 injections

Chickenpox. This is a disease that causes itchy skin bumps, fever, and tiredness. It can lead to scarring, pneumonia, or brain inflammation.

Adults who don’t have evidence of immunity

**This vaccine should not be given to pregnant women. Women should avoid pregnancy for 4 weeks after the vaccine.

Human papillomavirus (HPV)

One series of 3 injections

  • Cervical cancer, caused by certain types of HPV

  • Vaginal and vulvar cancer

  • Penile cancer

  • Head and neck cancers

  • Anal cancer

  • Genital warts

Females and males ages 15 to 26

Ask your healthcare provider if this vaccine is right for you.










How often

Disease prevented

Who needs it


1 or 2 doses, depending on the type of vaccine:

  • The CDC recommends a 2-dose vaccine; the second dose given 2 to 6 months after the first

  • Live zoster vaccine*** is 1 dose

Herpes zoster (shingles), a painful rash marked by blisters

Adults ages 50 and older, including those who have already had shingles.


***You should not get the live vaccine if your immune system is low. For example, if you have HIV, are taking medicines that suppress your immune system, or are getting cancer treatment.

Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR)**

1 or 2 doses, for ages 19 through 49; 1 dose for ages 50 and older if at risk

Measles causes red spots, fever, and coughing. It also causes swelling in the salivary glands and may affect the ovaries or testes.

Rubella (German measles) can cause birth defects if a pregnant woman catches it.

Adults born in 1957 or later who are not known to be immune to all 3 of these diseases. Ask your healthcare provider if you need a second dose.

**This vaccine should not be given to pregnant women. Women should avoid pregnancy for 4 weeks after vaccination.

Pneumococcal (PCV 13)

1 dose

Pneumonia. This is an infection that causes inflammation in your lungs. It can lead to death.

Adults ages 65 and older. Also, adults ages 19 and older with weak immune systems or any of these health conditions: chronic renal failure, nephrotic syndrome, functional or anatomic asplenia, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leaks, or cochlear implants. This vaccine adds extra protection to PCV 23 and should be given about 2 months before PCV 23.

Pneumococcal (PPSV23)

 1 or 2 doses

Pneumonia. This is an infection that causes inflammation in your lungs. It can lead to death.

Adults ages 65 and older. Also, adults with chronic illnesses, such as asthma, COPD, heart disease, diabetes, liver disease, alcoholism, sickle cell disease, or history of splenectomy. In addition, adults with an immune disorder and adults who smoke cigarettes. This vaccine is recommended for all adults regardless of immune status.






How often

Disease prevented

Who needs it



1 or more doses

Meningococcal disease (bacterial meningitis). This is inflammation of the membrane covering the brain and spinal cord. It can lead to death.

Adults with immune deficiencies or high risk of exposure. Also, college freshmen living in dormitories and military recruits.

Hepatitis A (HepA)

One series of 2 injections

Hepatitis A. This is an infection that can result in acute liver inflammation and yellow skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice).

Adults with risk factors, such as clotting disorders or chronic liver disease, and adults with high risk of exposure. This includes men who have sex with men, IV drug users, and travelers to countries where hepatitis A is common.

Hepatitis B (HepB)

One series of 3 injections

Hepatitis B. This is an infection that causes chronic, severe liver disease.

Adults with high risk of exposure, such as healthcare providers and sanitation workers, and adults with diabetes

Travelers’ diseases

As needed

Infections such as cholera, typhoid, yellow fever, polio, rabies, meningococcal disease, hepatitis A, hepatitis B

Adults traveling out of the country. Required vaccines will vary, depending on the country you visit. Check the CDC website:

Based on the CDC National Immunization Program recommendations for adults