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Immunization Schedule, Children (cont.)

Influenza Vaccine

H Influenzae Type B (Hib) Vaccine Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) is a serious disease caused by bacteria. It usually strikes children younger than 5 years.

Your child can get Hib disease by being around other children or adults who have the bacteria and do not know it. The germs spread from person to person. Before the vaccine, Hib was the leading cause of bacterial meningitis among children younger than 5 years in the United States.

  • This vaccine should be given to children at age 2, 4, and 6 months. A fourth dose is given at 12-15 months. If Pedvax (HIB combined with DTaP) or Comvax (HIB combined with hepatitis B) is administered at 2 and 4 months, the dose at 6 months is not necessary. A fourth dose is given at 12-15 months.
  • Children older than 5 years usually do not need Hib vaccine. Some older children and adults with special health conditions should get vaccinated.

Seasonal Flu (Influenza) Vaccine

This vaccine is indicated to prevent seasonal flu viruses in healthy children, adolescents, and adults. Flu vaccine contents often change each year and the contents of the vaccine are decided by the U.S. Public Health Service. Typically, three virus strains are included in the formulation each year, which represent the influenza virus strains likely to circulate during the upcoming flu season.

The flu vaccine is recommended yearly for children 6 to 59 months of age. It is also recommended annually for children over 59 months of age if certain risk factors are present.

Children younger than 9 years who are given the influenza vaccine for the first time require a second shot one month after the first.

Flu vaccine is also available as a nasal spray (FluMist) for healthy children 5 years or older, adolescents, and adults 49 years or younger. Children 5-8 years old who have not received the flu vaccine as a nasal spray before require two doses about two months apart. Due to the risk of Reye syndrome, children who take aspirin should not receive the flu vaccine.

Polio Vaccine

Polio is a disease caused by a virus. It enters a child's body through the mouth. Sometimes it causes paralysis (inability to move arms or legs) and can lead to death.

Polio used to be very common in the United States. It paralyzed and killed thousands of people a year in epidemics before we had a vaccine to prevent it.

  • All children should receive four doses of the inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) injection. This is a change from previous use of the oral polio vaccine, which had a small risk of causing polio.
  • Immunizations are given at age 2, 4, 6-18 months, and between 4-6 years.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/6/2014
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