DHH reminds parents about school vaccines
BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals reminded parents Friday that with the first day of school around the corner, it's time to make sure their kids' vaccinations are up to date in accordance with state law.
"When we don't vaccinate, we leave the door open for the return of diseases such as measles and whooping cough, which continue to be a threat to babies, children and adults in the United States," said DHH Immunization Medical Director Dr. Frank Welch. "School vaccination laws have helped eliminate major vaccine-preventable diseases. So, avoid the rush and take the time now to schedule your children for their back-to-school vaccinations."
Children who are four years of age and older and are entering kindergarten, pre-kindergarten or Head Start programs this year must have proof they have received the following vaccinations:
- a booster dose of Poliovirus vaccine (IPV)
- two doses of Measles, Mumps, Rubella vaccine (MMR)
- three doses of Hepatitis vaccine (HBV)
- two doses of Varicella (chicken pox) vaccine (Var)
- a booster dose of Diphtheria Tetanus Acellular Pertussis vaccine (DtaP)
Children in daycare must also be up to date with the appropriate immunizations for their age.
Children who are 11 or older and are entering sixth grade this year must have proof they have received the following age-appropriate vaccinations:
- meningococcal (meningitis) vaccine
- Tetanus Diphtheria Acellular Pertussis vaccine (Tdap)
Parents can have their family doctor administer the vaccines, and the physician can provide a copy of the child's immunization record as proof.
Children who have Medicaid or meet certain conditions may be eligible to receive vaccinations at Parish Health Units. DHH's interactive parish map can be used to find a convenient vaccination location and the requirements can be found on their website.
Parents who are unable to submit proof of updated vaccinations for their children will need to have them re-vaccinated in order to get an updated record.