Vaccination is one of the best ways to protect infants, children, and teens from 16 potentially harmful diseases. Vaccine-preventable diseases can be very serious, may require hospitalization, or even be deadly – especially in infants and young children.
Health care providers are parents' most trusted source of information about vaccines. This is true even for parents with the most questions and concerns. Those personal relationships qualify providers to help support parents in understanding and choosing vaccinations.
As kids get older, protection from some childhood vaccines begins to wane. Plus, older kids can also develop risks for other diseases. Health check-ups and sports or camp physicals can be a good opportunity for your preteens and teens to get the recommended vaccines.
Adult vaccination rates are extremely low, mostly because most adults are NOT aware that they need vaccines. Recommendation from their healthcare professional is the strongest predictor of whether patients get vaccinated. CDC has information on the newly revised Standards for Adult Immunization Practice calling on ALL health care providers to ensure that adult patients are fully immunized.
The Vaccines for Children (VFC) program offers ACIP recommended vaccines to children through age 18 at no cost, if they qualify.
Vaccine Information Statements (VIS) are information sheets produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A VIS will explain both the benefits and risks of a vaccine to adult vaccine recipients and the parents or legal representatives of children or adolescents receiving vaccines. Federal law requires that VISs be handed out whenever certain vaccinations are given (before each dose).
View the most current VIS available.
Vaccines are developed with the highest standards of safety. However, as with any medical procedure, vaccination has some risks. Individuals react differently to vaccines, and there is no way to predict how individuals will react to a particular vaccine. The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) requires health care providers to report adverse events (possible side effects) that occur following vaccination. The Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) is a national passive reporting system that accepts reports from the public on adverse events associated with vaccines licensed in the United States.
The Nebraska State Immunization Information System (NESIIS) is a system that can help providers with vaccine inventory, make recommendations about needed vaccinations, and can provide access to a patient's immunization history.