Immunizations: Your Child’s Best Shot at Health

One of the best ways to keep your children healthy is to have them immunized. Vaccines are the single most effective way to protect children and adults from preventable, life-threatening infectious diseases.

Declining immunization rates among children are allowing some childhood infectious diseases to make a comeback. Diseases such as pertussis (whooping cough) are returning in epidemic proportions and have resulted in child deaths. Following immunization recommendations can protect your child and others from these dangerous diseases.

How Vaccines Work

Vaccines allow a child to become immune to a disease without becoming sick. Vaccines work very well by stimulating the child’s immune system to produce antibodies in the same way it would if the child was exposed to the disease itself. Vaccines produce immunity about 90 - 99 percent of the time.

Childhood Immunization Schedule

Children from birth through age 6 can be protected against 14 infectious diseases through 10 vaccines. The recommended vaccine schedule provides immunity early in life. This is important because young children are susceptible to diseases and their bodies may not be strong enough to fight infection.

All childhood vaccinations are given as a series of two or more doses. More than one dose of these vaccines is needed to build high enough immunity to prevent disease, as well as to boost immunity that fades over time.

Click here to view, print or download the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) easy-to-read childhood immunization schedule.


 Age 

 


Recommended Vaccinations  

During Pregnancy:

 

 Birth:

 

 1-2 Months:

 

 4 Months:

 

 6 Months:

 

 12-23 Months:

 

 2-3 Years:

 

 4-6 Years:

 

 7-10 Years:

 

 11-12 Years:

 

 13-18 Years:

 

Learn More about Vaccines

Parents seeking additional information are encouraged to learn more from your health care provider or these trusted sources. The information comes from reliable health resources, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatricians, the World Health Organization, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

American Academy of Pediatrics Resource for Children’s Health Information

Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC)

Every Child by Two’s Vaccinate Your Baby Program

Healthy Futures

Immunization Action Coalition (IAC)

World Health Organization (WHO)

Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia