As a new school year begins, the Scotland County Health Department reminds parents and guardians of the need to ensure children are up-to-date on their immunizations.

Missouri law requires that children in kindergarten through 12th grade receive immunizations to protect against certain vaccine-preventable diseases. This helps protect everyone: children, teachers, staff and the community as a whole.

“Proper immunization can prevent serious health issues that could affect your child and others,” said Director of the Department of Health and Senior Services, Dr. Randall Williams. “With the recent outbreaks of mumps and measles, being completely immunized is as important as ever. Don’t wait. Talk to your physician or local health department about your child’s immunizations today.”

Children attending kindergarten through 7th grade are required to be up-to-date on: DTaP – Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis; Polio;  Hepatitis B; MMR – Measles, mumps and rubella; and Varicella – Chickenpox.

Children entering 8th grade are required to have two additional immunizations to protect their health: Tdap – Tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (booster); and Meningococcal ACWY

A booster dose of Meningococcal ACWY is also required for children entering 12th grade.

Vaccines help protect children against serious illness caused by diseases like measles and whooping cough, while continuously undergoing testing to ensure safety.

For more information, please visit: http://health.mo.gov/living/wellness/immunizations/index.php.