August 28th, 2019
ACPeds Parent Talk

Keeping parents up to date on the latest news in child and teen health
Vaccines Save Lives (National Immunization Awareness Month)
For many parents around the nation, the month of August is a time of getting our children ready for the school year. One of the best ways to protect your children’s health before the school year even starts is to make sure your children are up to date on their vaccines according to the latest Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) guidelines.
The American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) strongly recommends that children be vaccinated following the ACIP guidelines because childhood immunizations have played, and continue to play an integral role in maintaining the health of individuals and the public.

The most common vaccination side effects are localized (pain, redness, swelling) and fever.

Because vaccinations have been administered nationally and globally for decades, most nations across the globe have experienced a marked reduction in pertussis, diptheria, tetanus, polio, measles, rubella, and chicken pox . Vaccines have made these diseases so rare that most parents and even some health professionals have taken prevention for granted, and--in some cases--have never even seen some of these childhood diseases.
Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child
  • Immunizations can save your child’s life. Because of advances in medical science, your child can be protected against more diseases than ever before. Vaccination protects children from serious illness and complications of vaccine-preventable diseases which can include amputation of an arm or leg, paralysis of limbs, hearing loss, convulsions, brain damage, and death.

  • Vaccines are very safe and effective. Vaccines are only given to children after a long and careful review by scientists, doctors, and healthcare professionals. Serious side effects following vaccination, such as severe allergic reaction, are very rare. 

  • Immunization protects others you care about. While some babies are too young to be protected by vaccination, others may not be able to receive certain vaccinations due to severe allergies, weakened immune systems from conditions like leukemia, or other reasons. To help keep them safe, it is important that you and your children who are able to get vaccinated are fully immunized.
Due to vaccine hesitancy and refusal, vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles, mumps, and whooping cough, are still a threat and we have seen resurgences of measles and whooping cough (pertussis) over the past few years.

In addition, we have had two recent back-to-back flu seasons that have been more severe than usual. There have been some changes in the strains that should be covered by this year's flu vaccines. Children with chronic respiratory or neurologic diseases, and those who have had flu before should especially be vaccinated within the next few months.

If you want to do everything possible to make sure your children are healthy and protected from preventable diseases, vaccination is one of the best ways to do that.

For more information:

The Vaccines for Children program is a federally funded program that provides vaccines at no cost to children from low-income families . To find out more about the VFC program, visit or ask your child’s health care professional.

Want to read articles that can help you and your family become happier and healthier? Check out our other Parent Talk articles at and the ACPeds blog at . To receive articles like these straight to your inbox, visit to subscribe to the blog and click here to subscribe to the Parent Talk newsletter.
American College of Pediatricians | | | 352-376-1877