August marks National Immunization Month

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With August labeled as National Immunization Awareness Month the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is reminding parents to check which vaccines are required for students this school year.

In most states, students must have proof of receiving their required vaccines, which protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and other preventable  illnesses. If they have not yet received their vaccines, the school may ask for proof that the child at least has an appointment to receive it before starting school. See the Center for Disease Control and Prevention  site for requirements in your state.

Immunizations come highly recommended during time when we have seen increases in whooping cough cases over the past couple years,” IDPH Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck said. “Schools are highly susceptible to outbreaks of infectious diseases because students can easily pass illnesses to one another as a result of poor hand washing, uncovered coughs and crowding conditions.”

Students who are not vaccinated are more susceptible to disease and could spread disease to others in the classroom or community, including infants who are too young to be fully vaccinated, or people with weak immune systems due to health conditions like cancer.

Check with your health care provider to make sure you and your child are up to date on immunizations.