Vaccines can prevent millions of cases of infectious diseases each year. However, during the last two decades, immunization became a matter of controversy because many parents nowadays refuse to have their children vaccinated.
The reason was the study by Andrew Wakefield, which suggested that the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine could trigger autism, increasing the anti-vaccination campaigns and activism.
Although these claims have been scientifically disputed in many following studies, which proved that there's no link between vaccines and autism, false information and unscientific claims continued to spread on many websites, blogs, and message boards, leading many parents to believe that the vaccines pose a great risk for their children's health.
The truth is actually opposite. Refusing to vaccinate your child is what puts their health at risk, and not only their health but of all other children and adults who are not immune.
Vaccination rates that dropped worldwide contributed to outbreaks of preventable diseases in the developed world. If this trend continues, the things may get worse, meaning that we might see many other diseases we thought we'd never see again.
Education about vaccines and immunization is important in order to increase vaccination rates and prevent future outbreaks.
There are many reputable and trusted resources available, many of them in a form of mobile apps which are intended for both healthcare professionals and parents.
Here, we list some of the most popular immunization apps available on Android and iOS markets.
The CDC Vaccine Schedules app is aimed at medical providers, rather than patients and parents.
It allows them quickly access immunization schedules and recommendations for administering vaccines to infants, children, adolescents, and adults.
The app, however, lacks some of the functionality of the CDC website, particularly its personalized catch-up scheduler.
CDC Vaccine Schedules app is available for free for Android and iOS.
Planning international travel is not just about booking flights and accommodations. You also need to think about your health and safety, including immunizations.
TravWell is another app developed by CDC, which provides travelers worldwide with travel and health recommendations to help them prepare for their trip.
The "CDC Vaccines and Medicines Advice" section recommends vaccines and medications for the particular destination. Each destination provides its own recommendations that should be discussed with the healthcare provider before the trip.
Users can schedule vaccine, chose right vaccine for each disease, set personal reminders, and add notes.
CDC TravWell app is available for free for Android and iOS devices.
Vaccine Reminder App
Vaccine Reminder by Pediatric Oncall is an app for parents to keep a track of their children's vaccination history. Parents can add multiple children to the app to get the vaccination chart and schedules and receive a reminders a couple of days before the shot is due.
The app features separate sections to Vaccine Updates for parents and providers, which can also use the app.
Vaccine reminder is available for free for iOS and Android.
Child Health Tracker App
Child Health Tracker is an app designed for parents allowing them access to their children's health information, and key contacts, such as caregivers and healthcare providers.
Parents can use the app to note conditions, concerns, and other issues, as well as to track their children's medications.
The app also provides AAP guidance on the vaccinations and milestones.
Child Health Tracker app is available only on iOS for $2.99.
Our score: N/A
Emory University developed the ReadyVax app with a goal to provide parents and healthcare providers (physicians and pharmacists) with the information about vaccines, vaccine-preventable diseases, and vaccine safety.
The information in the app is based on the current published evidence from scientific literature needed to make informed vaccination decisions.
ReadyVax App is available for free, however, only for iOS.
Our score: 87%
Vaccines on the Go or as its full name states Vaccines on the Go: What You Should Know, is the app created by the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
It is made for parents, providing them with the information about the actual vaccines and the diseases they prevent, along with potential side effects, vaccine safety topics, including autism, types of vaccines and how they're made and recommended immunization schedules for children, teens, and adults.
The app is available for free for Android and iOS.
AAP Red Book App
AAP Red Book app is a mobile version of the Red Book Online site. It provides healthcare professionals with a quick access to critical, current information for diagnosis, treatment, and management of more than 200 infectious diseases, as well as drug dosing.
The app's key resources are also immunization schedules, vaccine status table, and Influenza resource page.
The app is available for free for iOS and Android.
Shots Immunizations app is developed by the STFM (Society of Teachers of Family Medicine) Immunization Education Special Project Team.
The app provides the most current immunization recommendations, as well as the content included in the annually printed schedules published by the CDC, including supplemental text, graphics, and commentary from immunization experts.
Immunization schedules provided in the app are featured in an easy-to-navigate format that makes finding the relevant information quick and easy.
Shots Immunizations is available for iOS and Android devices for free.
The Vaccine Handbook app is an authoritative, user-friendly source on vaccines and immunization.
It is a mobile version of the popular "Purple Book" guide that contains practical advice and background on vaccine program infrastructure, standards and regulations, business aspects of vaccine practice, general recommendations, schedules, special circumstances, how to address the concerns of parents and patients, and more.
The app also includes specific information about vaccine-preventable diseases, the rationale for vaccine use, and available products.
The Vaccine Handbook app is targeted to medical professionals, including pediatricians, family practitioners, internists, obstetricians, residents, physician assistants, medical students, and nurse practitioners.
The app is available for free, for iOS only.
Our score: 91%