The understanding about and vaccination rate for common infectious diseases among Chinese seniors are still low, according to a survey report released yesterday, the National Vaccination Day.

The survey, conducted by the Chinese Association of Geriatric Research, polled more than 4,300 people and found that many over the age of 50 years underestimate their risk of catching common infectious diseases like flu, streptococcus pneumonia and shingles.

Many were not even aware of the effects of vaccination against these diseases.

Feng Zijian from the Chinese Preventive Medicine Association said that the public usually pays attention to children’s vaccination. But, the elderly are also vulnerable. “Elderly people’s immunity drops along with age and they usually have one or several underlying diseases. If they get infected, they could face more serious symptoms and it could also be fatal. Vaccination is a safe and effective way to prevent and reduce such risks. Currently, the promotion of COVID-19 vaccination among the elderly population is very crucial,” he noted.