Keeping up-to-date immunization records for your family, especially your children, is important. You will need your children’s immunization records to register them for school, child care, athletic teams and summer camps or to travel.
Keeping accurate, up-to-date immunization records is vital.
By following the recommended schedule and fully immunizing your child on time, you will help protect your child against 14 vaccine-preventable diseases. If your child missed a vaccine, now is a good time for your child to catch-up. During this time, your child will also receive additional vaccine doses needed for the best protection.
Children between 4 and 6 should visit the doctor once a year for check-ups. During this time, your child receives the following vaccines: Diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough (pertussis) (DTaP); Polio (IPV); Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR); Chickenpox (Varicella) and Influenza (flu) every year.
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As you help your kids get ready for school, make sure they’re fully vaccinated. Typically your child needs a certificate of immunization to enroll in a new school. Your doctor’s office or health clinic should be able to give you a record of your child’s immunizations. You also can ask if your doctor has recorded the vaccines your child has received in your state’s immunization registry.
Making sure that children of all ages receive all their vaccinations on time is one of the most important things parents can do to ensure their children’s long-term health – as well as the health of friends, classmates and others in the community.
Most health insurance plans cover the cost of vaccines, but you may want to check with your insurance provider before going to the doctor to see what is covered under your plan.
If you don’t have health insurance or your plan does not cover vaccines, the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program may be able to help. This program provides vaccines at no cost to more than 42,000 health care professionals who serve eligible children. Children younger than 19 are eligible for VFC vaccines if they are Medicaid-eligible, American Indian or Alaska Native or have no health insurance.
Parents of uninsured children who receive vaccines at no cost through the VFC Program should check with their doctor about possible vaccine administration fees that might apply. The administration fees help providers cover the costs that result from important services, such as storing the vaccines and paying staff members to give vaccines to patients.
To learn more about the VFC program, go to cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/index.html.
Many public health clinics offer free vaccines to those eligible through the Vaccines for Children program. Public Health Clinic; Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) or Rural Health Clinic (RHC).
- Unity Care Northwest, 220 Unity St., Bellingham; 360-676-6177, interfaithchc.org/contact/bellingham-health-center.
- Sea Mar CHC, 4455 Cordata Parkway, Bellingham; 360-671-3225, seamar.org.
- Sea Mar CHC Everson Medical Clinic, 6884 Hannegan Road, Everson; 360-354-0766, seamar.org.
There also is no charge for routine recommended vaccines at Whatcom County Health Department.