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Tag: required immunizations for school

Vaccines and Immunocompromised Children

As Happy Valley pediatricians and parents know, there are a few cases in which vaccines and immunizations required for school need to be administered carefully, or not at all. Some children have compromised immune systems resulting from various health issues like congenital immunodeficiency, HIV, leukemia, lymphoma, radiation, renal failure, and other conditions. These children need to be treated with special care when it comes to required immunizations for school, and may not be able to receive all of their school shots safely. The degree to which a child is immunocompromised must be determined by a physician. If your Happy Valley pediatrician can’t do this, they will refer you to someone who can.

Not All Vaccines Are Made Alike

Generally, inactivated vaccines, do not pose a threat to children with compromised immune systems. This means that immunocompromised children may be able to receive some of the required immunizations for school.

Live vaccines can present the greatest danger to children with compromised immune systems. Some live vaccines will be delayed for these special needs patients, and some may not be given at all. A Happy Valley pediatrician can advise you and determine a special vaccine schedule for your child to follow in lieu of school shots.

Make sure that the school nurse and all your child’s health care providers are aware of their condition. Be sure to state in writing that your child cannot receive any school shots. Talk to your Happy Valley pediatrician and get a note excusing them from required immunizations for school.

Different Cases, Different Requirements

Each case of compromised immunity will require different care. If your child suffers from an immunocompromised condition, your Happy Valley pediatrician will take into account their overall health, as well as their potential to sustain a vaccine, or school shot. There is simply no rule about which vaccines a child facing the difficulty of a compromised immune system can support.

However, if your child is unable to support vaccines, this does not mean that they are in immediate danger of developing dangerous diseases. Because vaccines, especially school shots, work on the principle of herd immunity, and most vaccines have been used in our population for decades, there is very good protection in place already for those who are unable to be vaccinated. Talk to your Happy Valley pediatrician about the possible options for school shots if your child has a compromised immune system.

Posted in Blog on October 24th, 2014