It’s back to school season, and as you’re purchasing school supplies and uniforms, don’t forget to check your child’s immunization record. One of the most important things that parents and legal guardians can do is protect their children’s health, by making sure they have all of the required and recommended vaccines. Schools, child care centers and colleges are settings where disease outbreaks can occur. Illnesses in these settings can easily spread due to poor hand washing, not covering their coughs and other factors such as interacting in crowded environments.The state of Illinois requires children who are entering child care or school to be vaccinated against certain diseases.
Children who are not vaccinated are at a higher risk of catching preventable diseases and spreading them to others. Those who can’t be vaccinated, like children who are too young or individuals with certain medical conditions, are vulnerable to diseases. Here is the list of infectious diseases, many of which can be deadly, that can be prevented by fully vaccinating your children and yourself!
- Diphtheria (Whooping cough)
- Pertussis ((Whooping cough)
- Rubella (German measles)
- Varicella (Chicken Pox)
- Meningitis (various strains)
- Hepatitis (various strains)
Vaccines are not just for children, but are recommended for individuals throughout our lives. According to the CDC, “Vaccines are among the safest and most cost-effective ways to prevent disease. They not only protect vaccinated individuals, but also help protect entire communities by preventing and reducing the spread of infectious diseases.”