After most schools were cancelled early last spring due to COVID-19, back to school season may be a little different this year. As you round up the notebooks and sharpen the pencils, and get the kids back to their regular classrooms, schedules and teachers, it’s also time to think about regular immunizations. Vaccination throughout childhood is essential because it helps provide immunity before children are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases. Here are some helpful reminders about regular immunizations to keep in mind as the school year starts – as provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
For kids ages 4-6 (Starting school):
- Children starting school need additional doses of some vaccines, as well as a flu vaccine every year. Recommended vaccines for this age group help protect your youngsters against Chickenpox, Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR), Polio, Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTaP) and the flu.
For kids ages 7-10 (Elementary school):
- Elementary-aged children should continue to get a flu vaccine.
Adolescents ages 11-12 (Middle school):
- Middle school-aged adolescents need vaccines that extend protection from additional infections before the risk of exposure increases, as well as a flu vaccine. Recommended vaccines for this age group help protect your pre-teens from Human papillomavirus (HPV), Meningococcal conjugate vaccine, Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap) and the flu.
Adolescents ages 14-18 (High school):
- High school-aged adolescents will need additional doses of some vaccines, as well as a flu vaccine. Recommended vaccines for this age group help protect your teens from meningococcal disease, erogroup B meningococcal infection and the flu.
For young adults heading off to college:
- If you have a young adult that is packing-up and heading to college, make sure all vaccinations are up to date and that he/she has a copy of all immunization records. Flu vaccines should continue every year.
Staying on Top of Immunizations with BioReference
If your child has missed any vaccines, work with your healthcare provider to make sure he or she gets caught up. The start of the school year can be a good reminder to schedule an annual well visit with your child’s pediatrician and discuss any questions you have about immunizations. If you are unsure about past immunizations, have moved providers, etc. titer testing from a laboratory like BioReference can detect the presence of antibodies and help confirm whether or not an individual has received specific immunizations and vaccinations.
If you are a healthcare provider, click here to become a client so you can begin ordering titer tests from BioReference today.
Source: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)