Parents: Be aware of new immunization requirements for students - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Parents: Be aware of new immunization requirements for students

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INDIANA (WFIE) -

With the new school year quickly approaching, State health officials want Indiana parents to be aware of new immunization requirements for school entry. Parents can get immunization records from their health care provider or use the secure website, www.MyVaxIndiana.in.gov, to print their child's official immunization record from home by using personal identification number (PIN). 

For the 2013-2014 school year, all students in grades kindergarten through 12th grade will be required to have a record documenting two valid doses of varicella (chickenpox) vaccine or documented history of chickenpox disease. Students from kindergarten through fifth grade will need to have their history of chickenpox disease documented by a health care provider.

"We experienced multiple outbreaks of chickenpox around that state during the last school year," said Indiana State Department of Health Chief Medical Officer Joan Duwve, M.D. "This new requirement will help stop the spread of this preventable disease and keep kids healthy and in school."

Although not required for school entry, Dr. Duwve recommends that students also receive the following immunizations if they haven't already:

  • Two doses of Hepatitis A vaccine
  • Flu vaccine every year
  • Human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine, 3-dose series for all adolescents
  • Booster dose of meningococcal conjugate (meningitis) vaccine for adolescents ages 16-18

The requirements and recommendations are in alignment with the routine vaccination schedules from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). For a complete listing of all recommended immunizations, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/easy-to-read/index.html.

Indiana school immunization requirements are posted on the Indiana State Department of Health's website at www.state.in.us/isdh/17094.htm.

Hoosiers are encouraged to check their children's vaccination records on www.MyVaxIndiana.in.gov, a  user-friendly website from the Indiana State Department of Health that provides Hoosiers direct access to their immunization records from any computer through the use of a PIN. Many Hoosiers have already utilized this resource. Since MyVaxIndiana was launched in July 2012, nearly 30,000 PINs have been assigned and 4,619 unique records have been accessed from the site. PINs can be obtained from health care providers and used to log in to the secure website. Users can then download, print or fax official records. Each record also displays the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's recommended immunization schedule.

"The goal of the MyVaxIndiana site is to make it easier for all Hoosiers to access their immunization records," said Dr. Duwve. "Parents can check what immunizations their child has already received and find out what may still be needed, as well as print, fax or email an official copy of the record. Vaccinations reduce the spread of disease and help to keep all of us healthy."

To learn more about MyVaxIndiana, visit www.MyVaxIndiana.in.gov.

For more information about school immunization requirements, visit the Indiana State Department of Health's website at www.StateHealth.in.gov. Follow the Indiana State Department of Health on Twitter at @StateHealthIN and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/isdh1

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