Time to plan for children’s vaccinations

All Kentucky children should be vaccinated before the new school year.

Not only is it a good idea to help protect kids from illness, it’s also state law.

For years, controversy swirled nationally around vaccinations, with some parents thinking the injections were the cause of such things as autism.

But views have apparently shifted after a virulent outbreak of measles earlier this year that resulted from an infected traveler to Disneyland, who impacted mostly unvaccinated people.

So far this year, nearly 200 people have contracted measles. In 2014, there were more than 600 cases, a sharp increase from the less than 200 the year before, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A University of Michigan poll released this month shows 34 percent of parents think vaccines have more benefit than they did one year ago; 25 percent of parents believe vaccines are safer than they were a year ago; and 35 percent of parents report more support for day care and school vaccine requirements than a year ago.

So with schools about to start in a month, we encourage parents in Bowling Green and surrounding counties to get their kids vaccinated.

Before kindergarten, kids need immunizations, a school physical, a vision exam and a dental exam. Children entering kindergarten receive the Dtap for diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis; a measles-mumps-ruebella vaccine; and a chicken pox vaccine. Children entering sixth grade receive a Tdap booster vaccine for tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis; a meningitis vaccine and a second chicken pox vaccine.

It also is a good idea to have children’s height and weight checked and for them to have a physical exam.

There are several places in town parents can take kids to have them vaccinated and where they can get get physicals.

Parents can get their kids vaccinated at their pediatrician or family physician or they can take kids to one of the health departments in Bowling Green and surrounding counties. People here can take their kids to the Warren County Health Department at 1109 State St. on July 22. This will not be the only day shots and physicals will be provided, but those affiliated with the clinic urge parents to bring their kids in well before school starts and not wait until the last minute to get kids vaccinated.

That is sound advice, whether they are going to the health department or to their family doctor.

Obviously, this isn’t something kids look forward to doing. Who can blame them?

But it’s something that must be done for them to begin school.

All parents want their kids to be healthy, and while that will not always be the case, getting children vaccinated before the school year is a step in adding extra insurance that their children won’t get sick nearly as often.

The beginning of school will be here before you know it, so please take your kids and get the necessary vaccinations they need for their own well being and for the well being of their classmates.

The Daily News, Bowling Green

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