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Southern 7 Health Dept: It’s time to start thinking about back-to-school vaccines

Leaders at the Southern Seven Health Department say now's the time to start thinking about back to school vaccines for your kids.
Published: Apr. 16, 2022 at 7:17 AM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - As we wrap up the school year in just a few weeks, leaders at the Southern Seven Health Department say now is the time to start thinking about back to school vaccines for your kids.

“Go ahead and get in touch with your pediatrician. You can get in touch with your local Southern 7 Health Department clinic, and we can get the kids in and get them vaccinated. In Illinois, you are required to have at least 12 vaccinations up to date before your child attends school, but you do have a little bit of lee time after school starts. But again, it’s important to make sure those are done so you’re not waiting until the last minute,” Shawnna Rhine said.

“Having your child fully vaccinated helps to prevent the spread of many childhood illnesses that can go on to become serious. We need to keep in mind that there may be students in the school, maybe adults in your school, who aren’t able to be vaccinated against certain diseases. Maybe they’re allergic to the vaccine and they have another condition. You also still have children in your school and adults who are immunocompromised for whatever reason. So being vaccinated helps to prevent the spread of serious illnesses to them, and making sure that they have a good semester going forward,” Rhine said.

“Well, there are vaccines in place that can go on to prevent serious long term illnesses including Hepatitis B and HPV, you need to talk to your pediatrician to see if your child is eligible for those vaccines. A lot of them, HBV, typically starts right in the hospital. But again, those particular viruses can go on to have serious complications later on in life, including cancer. So making sure that your child is fully vaccinated is very important,” she said.

“A lot of people were thinking, well, why do I still get vaccinated against certain diseases that we don’t care about anymore, such as Measles and Mumps and Rubella? Keep in mind those viruses are still out there. Being vaccinated does help to control their spread and the reason we don’t hear about a lot of those diseases is because people do get vaccinated. So it is important to make sure that you are getting vaccinated again, there are some people who aren’t able to be vaccinated against certain diseases, so they are prone to that. So you’re not only protecting yourself and your family, you’re protecting others around you,” she said.

For more information or to schedule your child’s vaccine appointment through Southern Seven Health Department, you can call 618-634-2297 or visit online.

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