Catching Adolescent Patients Up On Routine Immunizations

During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The goal of this publication is to provide healthcare professionals with several recommendations when talking to patients, and guardians, about catching up on routine vaccinations.

Thoughts to Keep in Mind When Talking to Your Patients

  1. This may be your patient's first routine appointment since March 2020; remember that vaccines may be viewed in an entirely different light than your prior consultation.
  2. Your patient may have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and how they differ from routine vaccines. Be prepared to explain surface-level vaccinology, including mRNA and traditional vaccine technology.
  3. Reiterate the importance that these routine vaccines play in protecting their health and that of their peers.
  4. No matter the consultation's outcome, try to positively prime your patients for future vaccines and their importance. Understand that an individual's faith in vaccines, even routine ones, may be strained and in question as a result of misinformation.

The Importance of Getting Caught Up On Vaccines

  1. Childhood vaccinations help protect not only your child, but also their peers, immunocompromised individuals, and the elderly through herd immunity.
  2. These vaccines are fully approved by the FDA, safe, and made with ingredients that are strictly regulated and tested.
  3. Vaccines allow our children and teens to get back to doing what they love, whether that's playing football, studying with classmates, or volunteering at an elderly home.
  4. Vaccines work. They were created by individuals with decades of experience and expertise and are backed by thousands of scientific publications.

Resources to Reference and Read:

Camden Coalition - Guide: Talking to Patients About the COVID-19 Vaccines

CDC - Growing Up with Vaccines: What Should Parents Know?

HealthyChildren - Getting Kids Caught Up On Vaccines

NHMA - #Vaccinate4All Campaign (

NJDOH - COVID-19 Vaccination Deliverables and Toolkits