Child getting vaccinated

Are your children fully vaccinated?

Most parents associate summertime with pool visits, family vacations and camps for the kids. But it's also a great time to visit your pediatrician and make sure your children's vaccinations are current and ready for school in the fall.

Making sure your children get vaccinations on time is one of the most critical things you can do to ensure their long-term health – not to mention the health of friends, classmates and others with whom they come in contact. Several vaccine-preventable diseases have become virtually nonexistent thanks to parents taking the initiative to routinely vaccinate their children. Staying current on those vaccines also helps ensure this trend continues into the future.

So which vaccines does your child need? According to the Tennessee Department of Health, several immunizations are required before enrolling your children in child care facilities, pre-school programs or kindergarten. A complete list of required vaccines is available on the Tennessee Department of Health website (health.state.tn.us). Click on the immunization link in the left column.

In addition, the CDC puts together an annual overview of recommended immunizations for children ages 7-18, which includes in-depth information about the preventable diseases vaccinations guard against. Visit www.cdc.gov/vaccines for more information.