08/05/2010: "Free Vaccines For Kids"
It may seem early to think about summer break ending, but it’s time for Washington’s children to get ready for school. Back to school prep should start with immunizations, so protect your children from vaccine-preventable diseases by taking advantage of the Childhood Vaccine Program, or going to your family doctor.
With outbreaks of whooping cough, flu, and chickenpox in our state in the last year, and a large measles outbreak just across the border in Canada, parents should make sure their kids are protected by being fully immunized.
Childhood vaccinations are among the most effective ways to protect children against serious, preventable illnesses - some of which have no cure or treatment. Parents should use the next several weeks to ensure their kids have all the immunizations they need to attend school. Get ahead of the back-to-school rush by scheduling a yearly health checkup for your kids now.
“Parents make many important decisions to keep their children healthy, and getting immunized is one of the most important”, said State Health Officer and pediatrician Dr. Maxine Hayes. “Be sure your child’s immunizations are up-to-date; it protects them, their classmates, families, and communities.
All recommended vaccines for children under 19 are provided at no-cost through the state’s Childhood Vaccine Program. This includes vaccines required for school and child care, and vaccines that aren’t required, but are recommended for best protection, such as human papillomavirus (HPV) for pre-teens. Your health care provider may still charge an office visit or administration fee, but this can be waived if you are unable to pay.
“Washington’s Childhood Vaccine Program shows our state’s commitment to preventing the spread of serious disease,” said Dr. Hayes. “We’ve made it easy for parents to take advantage of the best way to protect their children and those in their community”.