Where can I get afforable immunizations for my son or daughter?

Clearly, vaccines are one of the best tools we have to keep kids healthy, but the effectiveness of immunization programs depends on availability. You can receive inexpensive or free vaccines through many local public health clinics and community health centers, and campaigns to vaccinate kids often hold free vaccination days. A program called Vaccines for Children covers Medicaid-eligible, uninsured, Alaskan and Native American populations, and some underinsured kids for routine immunizations up to 18 years of age. The vaccines are provided by the government and administered in a doctor’s office. However, the doctor’s visit itself is not covered (unless the child has insurance, including Medicaid). But some public health clinics may cover both the visit and the immunizations.

What is vaccine shedding?

The same idea as above and may occur with live weakened vaccines only. However, this type of shedding should not cause disease. Live weakened vaccines develop immunity without the risks of natural infection.

Should I believe what I see on the web about immunizations?

Before considering vaccine information on the Internet, confirm that the information comes from a credible source and is updated on a regular basis. CDC’s vaccines and immunization web content is researched, written and approved by subject matter experts, including physicians, researchers, epidemiologists, and analysts. Content is based on peer-reviewed science. CDC leadership makes the final decision on the words, images and links to best serve the information needs of the public as well as healthcare providers, public health professionals, partners, educators, and researchers. Science and public health data are frequently updated. Most pages are reviewed yearly.

Do all vaccines shed?

The potential for vaccine shedding only occurs with live weakened vaccines, and shedding may occur for a few days. The key is that the virus is weakened, so if shedding does occur it should not cause disease in the vaccinated person or anyone they have been in contact with.

Are immunizations safe?

Yes! Immunizations are thoroughly studied before they are licensed for public use. Vaccines, before they are approved in the United States go through a rigorous process to assess their safety. The link the the brochure below describes the entire process, and also the continued evaluation of vaccines. Clinical trials are conducted to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of any single or combination vaccine before it can be brought to the market. Once a vaccine is introduced, there is a strong system in place to continuously monitor its safety. Vaccine safety is a shared responsibility among the federal government, state and local health departments, other partners and the public. To help meet this shared responsibility, government agencies and their partners have established several coordinated systems to monitor the safety of vaccines after they have been licensed for public use. These systems, such as the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), are used together to help scientists continuously monitor issues.

Why does the media show scary stories about immunizations?

The media often covers stories about immunizations without understanding the science. Vaccines are studied extensively and are very safe. Just because an injury or issue occurs after receiving a vaccine, does not mean it was caused by the vaccine.

Is vaccine shedding harmful?

There is risk for someone who has a weak immune system. The risk is very small when coming into contact with someone who had been vaccinated with a live weakened vaccine. The higher risk would be immunizing a person who is highly immunocompromised (very weak immune system). This is why recommendations for these persons typically include holding live vaccines until their immune system function improves.

Are the ingredients in immunizations dangerous?

No. Immunizations and their ingredients are also studied extensively before licensure to ensure their safety. Certain ingredients are used to maintain the safety and sterility of a vaccines, and to increase the immune response. The below link to the Vaccine Education Center at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia breaks down a lot of this information. The ingredients in immunizations are included to create a stronger immunize response and make them work better. The ingredients do not cause diseases.

Are the side effects of immunizations worse than the diseases they prevent?

Vaccines are studied extensively and continuously and are very safe, while the diseases they prevent can cause serious injuries and even death. The Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD) founded in 1990 continuously monitors the safety of vaccines and conducts studies about rare and serious adverse events following immunization. Any new vaccines recommended for use in the Unites States are also monitored by the VSD for safety.

Are immunizations necessary?

You protect your child from car accidents with seat belts, you protect them from drowning by teaching them to swim, and you can protect him or her from vaccine-preventable diseases with immunization. Vaccination against infectious diseases remains one of the most successful health interventions in the past 100 years. Countless lives have been saved as a result of vaccines. Despite that, more than 3 million people die from vaccine-preventable diseases each year. Approximately 1.5 million of these deaths are in children less than five years old. In 2014, Ohio experienced the largest outbreaks of the measles in the U.S. in 20 years. The Ohio AAP and our member pediatricians understand that parents may have concerns about vaccinating their children and we support ongoing research and increased funding in that area.