NEW VACCINATION REQUIREMENT FOR STUDENTS ENTERING 6TH AND 9TH GRADES

Wed May 16, 2012

DUPAGE COUNTY-The DuPage County Health Department is informing parents that beginning with the 2012-2013 school year all students entering sixth and ninth grades will be required to provide proof of pertussis (whooping cough) vaccination, along with the school physicals already required for those grades.
 
Outbreaks of whooping cough have occurred recently among school children in Illinois. Pertussis is easily transmitted through coughing and sneezing and may cause an illness that persists for weeks to months. Pertussis does not typically cause severe illness in healthy students, but can cause prolonged absences from school and extracurricular activities.
 
In addition, pertussis can be transmitted from healthy students to infants and individuals with chronic illnesses, for whom pertussis can be life-threatening.
 
Protection against pertussis begins to wear off during grade school. This leaves pre-teens, teenagers and adults at risk for this illness. To address the increase in pertussis cases among older students, a booster vaccination (called Tdap) is recommended for all students in grades six through 12.
 
Students entering sixth and ninth grades without one of the following will be subject to exclusion:  

·         Proof of Tdap vaccination

·         An approved medical or religious exemption on file with the school
 
Many providers, local pharmacies and local health departments provide Tdap vaccinations. Many providers, including the DuPage County Health Department, participate in the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program, which provides vaccines to Medicaid-eligible children younger than 19 years of age. If you need assistance, check with the DuPage County Health Department for resources for getting the Tdap vaccination.

Check with your doctor if you are not sure if your child has received Tdap, and if not, get your child vaccinated. Adolescents and adults should receive a single Tdap vaccine at 11 years of age or older.

 
Remember, in addition to the Tdap booster, there are several important vaccines recommended for preteens and teens including the meningococcal vaccine, a second chickenpox shot (if they never had chickenpox disease), and the HPV vaccine series. Everyone older than six months of age is recommended to receive a seasonal flu vaccine.
 
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NEW VACCINATION REQUIREMENT FOR STUDENTS ENTERING 6TH AND 9TH GRADES