With school starting soon, Iowa parents are getting their kids in to doctors’ offices for their shots — and they’re finding some changes in vaccination requirements. Betty Krones, a disease prevention specialist with the Cerro Gordo County Department of Public Health, says the pneumococcal vaccine used to be just recommended for younger children but now is required to help prevent pneumonia and meningitis.
The "PCV7" is required for children entering daycare, she says. Children normally receive that at two, four and six months with a booster at 12 months. Krones says children entering kindergarten must also have more vaccinations for polio and chicken pox now than in the past.
She says a fourth dose of polio vaccine is now required, rather than just three, and a second dose of the varicella shot is required before kindergarten to prevent chicken pox, unless the child has already had the ailment.
Krones says another recent change adds another dose of the combination vaccine that covers diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis for kids six and under. For more about changes in vaccination requirements or about National Immunization Awareness Week, see the health department’s website .