The beginning of school can be a stressful one for both parents and kids. But what shouldn’t be added to the stress is the risk of infectious diseases coming into school with children.
Whether a child is starting kindergarten or high school, the state requires students to be up to date on all vaccinations, and the list of mandated immunizations is long.
This year they include Diphtheria, Tetanus, Polio, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Hepatitis B, Chickenpox, Meningococcal conjugate, HIB and PCV. But medical experts say that all these vaccines don’t just protect children in school, but the community at large — particularly the young and elderly.
"If children have younger siblings at home that are too young to be vaccinated, or for some other reason can't be vaccinated, it protects those other children to have the older sibling be vaccinated. Similarly, the elderly are often protected by vaccinating young children," said Dr. Nancy Bennett, University of Rochester Medical Center director.
The vaccination requirements for school-age children vary depending on age and grade. For more information on what specific vaccines your child might need for school, visit this website.