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Protection of preteen health starts with immunizations
The Department of Public Health is promoting Preteen Vaccine Week, February 9-15, 2014. This observance is part of a statewide effort to raise awareness of immunizing 11-12-year-olds against very serious, yet preventable diseases. Preteen Vaccine Week is a great reminder to check preteen’s immunization records and schedule a doctor visit.
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends that both preteen boys and girls receive the following recommended immunizations:
- Meningococcal (meningitis) – with a booster at 16 years
- HPV (Human Papillomavirus ) – three dose series
- Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis)
- Seasonal flu shot
- Some preteens may need to catch-up on other immunizations, which may include: varicella, hepatitis B, hepatitis A, MMR, and polio.
“To protect preteens against vaccine preventable diseases and to meet school entry requirements, we encourage families of preteens and adolescents to schedule a visit with their medical provider and get the immunizations they need,” said Maxwell Ohikhuare, M.D., County of San Bernardino Health Officer. “It is also important for medical providers to screen preteens and adolescents for all recommended immunizations at every encounter.”
All incoming 7th graders must provide proof of being immunized against pertussis (also known as whooping cough) before starting 7th grade. Right now is the perfect time to schedule an appointment with your child’s medical provider to ensure that they are up-to-date with all ACIP recommended immunizations.
If your preteen or adolescent does not have health insurance, call 1-877-243-8832 for information about the Vaccines for Children Program, which provides vaccines at low-cost. For County of San Bernardino Department of Public Health Clinic locations or to schedule an appointment, call 1-800-722-4777, Monday – Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., or visit www.sbcounty.gov/dph. For additional immunization information, please visit http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/immunize/Pages/Default.aspx.