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TO ENCOURAGE THE SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROL AND THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TO TAKE ACTION TO INCREASE AWARENESS OF SHINGLES AND SHINGLES PREVENTION.
Whereas, herpes zoster, also known as shingles, is a disease caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox, so any person who has contracted chickenpox during his or her lifetime is at risk for developing shingles; and
Whereas, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about ninety-eight percent of adults in the United States are at risk for developing shingles, and nearly one in three people in the nation will develop shingles in his or her lifetime, affecting more than one million Americans each year; and
Whereas, a person's risk of developing shingles increases with age; nearly half of individuals who develop shingles are over sixty years of age, and approximately half of those who reach eighty-five years of age will develop shingles in their lifetime; and
Whereas, according to the CDC, shingles is a viral infection that causes a painful and sometimes severe rash and other symptoms, including long-term nerve pain, fever, headache, chills, upset stomach, muscle weakness, skin infection, scarring, and decreased or loss of vision or hearing; and
Whereas, as many as twenty percent of adults who have contracted shingles will develop postherpetic neuralgia, a debilitating complication of shingles that causes severe pain, which may interfere with sleep and recreational activities and which may be associated with clinical depression; and
Whereas, vaccines have reduced the burden of widespread and often fatal diseases, enabling individuals to lead longer and healthier lives while reducing healthcare costs; and
Whereas, although much attention has been paid to the importance of childhood vaccinations, there is a general lack of awareness concerning adult-recommended vaccines and a misperception that immunizations are unnecessary for healthy adults; and
Whereas, the CDC and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommend that healthy adults fifty years of age and older be vaccinated against shingles to prevent shingles and shingles-related complications; and
Whereas, despite the recommendations of CDC officials and other experts, as of 2015 only thirty percent of eligible adults had received the shingles vaccine; and
Whereas, the annual economic burden of shingles in American adults is estimated to be between 782 million dollars and five billion dollars, and the Institute of Medicine has stated that missed prevention opportunities is one of the six key causes of excess spending in the United States healthcare system; and
Whereas, residents of South Carolina are encouraged to speak with their healthcare providers during the month of August which is observed as National Immunization Awareness Month to ensure that they have been properly vaccinated against shingles according to current CDC and ACIP recommendations. Now, therefore,
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring:
That the members of the South Carolina General Assembly, by this resolution, encourage the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control and the Department of Health and Human Services to take action to increase awareness of shingles and shingles prevention.
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