Happy New Year!
As promised, I've finally found the changes to the 2007 Immunization schedule. Each year the AAP and CDC immunization group make proposed changes then announce the approved ones early January. So, hot off the presses, here are the changes for this year's childhood immunization schedule:
The 2007 schedule includes the following major changes:
ï¿½Oral rotavirus vaccine for universal administration to all infants at 2, 4, and 6 months of age.
ï¿½Universal administration of a second dose of varicella vaccine at 4 to 6 years of age.
ï¿½The age range for universal annual administration of influenza vaccine has been expanded to children 6 to 59 months of age and those in close contact with children 0 to 59 months of age.
ï¿½Human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV) for girls 11 to 12 years of age, including catch-up immunization of girls 13 to 18 years of age. This vaccine prevents most cases of cervical cancer and genital warts, (AAPï¿½s formal recommendation for HPV vaccine to be released soon.)
There are important reasons for all of these proposed changes. Rotavirus is the most serious gastrointestinal virus that young kids can get. It accounts for about 1/2 million admissions yearly and over 100,000 ER visits. And, sadly, 400,000 kids less than 5 years of age die annually from it. This is a world-wide number. The vaccine works well and is safe.
The varicella booster is not really new. What is new is the universal application of it. Immunity does wane with most vaccines over time which is the reasoning behind the kindergarten boosters. This addition just catches varicella vaccine up to it's vaccine friends.
The influenza vaccine changes are not only an expansion of what we currently do but are now a universal recommendation. Influenza is a very serious illness in young kids and making sure they are immunized protects themselves and other kids they come into contact with.
Finally, HPV. Girls can get HPV and not know it for years. It causes cervical cancer, genital warts, and infertility. You may wonder why the call for the shot so you. The reasoning has to do with protecting the girls well before their hormones get them into potential trouble. It opens the door to discussions which are already on the girls minds. Believe it or not, by the time a young girl is 12 and in middle school, topics of sex, boys and sexuality come into play emotionally.
That's about it. As I get more info, I'll post it for you. I'll pull together some CDC and AAP resources as they come available, too.
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