Sinclair Cares: Keeping your child up to date on vaccination requirements

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    Keeping people safe is what hospital PR coordinator Shelby Cannon does every day. But making sure her child, Cannon Brown, is safeguarded against disease is more important than ever, because he's about to enter kindergarten.

    “I just want my son to be protected, of course," Shelby Cannon said. "God forbid if something happened to him and that could have been prevented. I wouldn't be able to live with myself.”

    Paperwork has already arrived from school, requiring proof of immunizations.

    There are 14 vaccine-preventable diseases. Still, what's required in one state may not necessarily be required in another.

    For instance, Connecticut is the only state that requires schoolchildren to get an annual flu vaccine. Three states, though -- Connecticut, North Carolina and Wyoming -- require the Hib to prevent Influenzae Type b.

    Hepatitis a is required in 13 states, plus the District of Columbia. All 50 states require DTaP or Tdap for protection against diptheria, tetanus and pertussis.

    All states also mandate MMR (for mumps, measles and rubella), IPV for polio, and varicella for chicken pox.

    A hepatitis b shot is required in most states.

    Your routine preventative visits are going to keep you up to date. So, if you go to your pediatrician for "well childs," you'll be up to date on your vaccines...just like Cannon.

    To find out what vaccinations are needed for your child, contact your local health department.

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