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Vaccine Requirements for the Upcoming School Year. By Our August Student Pharmacist, Mackenzie Gill.

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School is just around the corner! While you are busy making sure your child has everything they need in order to be prepared for their first day, don’t forget to make sure they also have their required vaccinations.

The following vaccines are required by ALL Ohio schools. Failure to provide proof of vaccination could result in exclusion from school.

**All students entering 7th and 12th grade MUST get the meningococcal (meningitis) vaccine.**

This vaccine prevents and protects against meningococcal disease (meningitis).

What is meningitis?

Meningitis is the inflammation of brain and spinal cord membranes, typically caused by a bacterial infection. Meningitis can cause blindness, loss of limbs, and even death.

How does someone get meningitis?

Meningitis can be spread by coming in contact with the germs of an infected individual. Individuals who carry the bacteria do not always appear sick. The most common way these germs can be spread are by coughing, sneezing, and kissing. Children in school are especially susceptible because they are in close contact with many other students throughout the day.

What are the common signs and symptoms of meningitis?

Common symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Stiff neck
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Confusion

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**All students entering 7th grade MUST get a booster dose of the Tdap or Td vaccine.**

This vaccine prevents and protects against tetanus and diphtheria. Pertussis (whooping cough) is also protected against if receiving Tdap.

What is tetanus? How does someone get tetanus? What are the common signs and symptoms of tetanus?

Tetanus is a serious bacterial infection. Most commonly, tetanus occurs when a puncture wound occurs, like stepping on a nail or needle. There are other events that can cause tetanus like burns or pre-existing wounds that get contaminated with dirt, poop, or spit.

Common symptoms include:

  • Jaw cramping
  • Muscle spasms and stiffness

What is diphtheria? How does someone get diphtheria? What are the common signs and symptoms of diphtheria?

Diphtheria is a serious infection of the nose and throat. It is spread from person to person, commonly by coughing or sneezing.

Common symptoms include:

  • Swollen glands in the neck
  • Weakness
  • Sore throat

What is pertussis? How does someone get pertussis? What are the common signs and symptoms of pertussis?

Pertussis is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection. It is spread from person to person, typically by coughing, sneezing, or sharing breathing space. Early symptoms resemble a typical cold. The symptoms progress into much more serious symptoms with the most common one being coughing fits followed by high-pitched “whoop” sounds. These fits can cause vomiting and exhaustion and shortness of breath.

These very serious illnesses can all be prevented by getting your children vaccinated! Most insurance plans cover these vaccines at no cost or at a reduced price.

Plain City Druggist can administer these vaccines to your children if they are over thirteen-years-old WITHOUT a prescription from their doctor. If your child is between the ages of 7-12, Plain City Druggist can administer these vaccines only WITH a prescription from their doctor.

We look forward to seeing you!

More information on these vaccines and Ohio School requirements can be found at www.cdc.gov and www.odh.ohio.gov

There are other vaccines that are required for entry into school, but are not discussed here since they are routinely given as part of your child’s pediatric visits as babies and/or young children.

 

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