Preparing your kids for school with immunizations

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It is hard to believe, but it is nearly back to school time. There are a lot of things you need to do before hand, including making sure your kids are up on their immunizations.

There are some requirements before kids head to school, mainly if you have a kindergartner, first grader, or 6th grader, you need to check their shot records to make sure you have chicken pox, meningitis, and hepatitis covered.

Melissa McMasters of the Marion County Health Department says the most important thing to is not to procrastinate.

"The biggest challenge we face is parents like to wait until the last minute to get the vaccines and we really encourage them to come in anytime during the summer because we have clinics throughout Marion County that offer these vaccines."

For this school year there are no significant changes from last year, but McMasters says the state is doing something different in that they are making recommendations.

"Those recommendations include two doses of Hepatitis A vaccine for kindergartners and then meningococcal meningitis vaccine booster for kids in 11th and 12th grade," she said.

The Marion County Health Department has summer clinics that will offer these vaccines, or you can also go to your own doctor.

It can get confusing about what's needed what isn't. For example, kindergartners should have two doses of the chicken pox vaccine before they start school.

You can see the health department's shot sheet here.

See a list of immunizations for which no doctor prescription is required.