PINE BELT (WDAM) - With the start of a new school year just weeks away, the Mississippi State Department of Health is reminding parents that state law requires children to be immunized before heading back to school.
"There are many options for where to get your vaccinations now, including private medical providers and retail stores," said MSDH State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers in an issued news release. "Regardless of where you go, it's incredibly important to make sure you're up-to-date on your immunizations. Not only are certain vaccines required for school entry, they are also the best way to protect your child and those around them."
Required vaccinations for children entering school in Mississippi for the first time include:
- Tetanus and Pertussis (DTaP);
- Polio (IPV);
- Hepatitis B;
- Mumps and Rubella (MMR);
- Varicella (chickenpox).
There is also a requirement for children entering seventh grade to receive the Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis) vaccination.
In addition, human papillomavirus vaccination (HPV) and a meningococcal vaccination (MCV4) are recommended for adolescents 11 to 15 years of age, and a meningococcal vaccination (MCV4) is recommended at age 16 to 18 years, according to MSDH officials.
Parents are required to provide their child's school with a Certificate of Immunization Compliance , or a Form 121, from their immunization provider prior to school entry.
Immunizations can be scheduled with a physician or county health department.
Residents who have questions about which immunizations can call their local county health department about the best dates and times to bring children in for immunizations.
For more information on immunization requirements or medical exemptions for school entry, visit www.HealthyMS.com/immunizations.