Childhood Immunizations

Feature circle icon Immunizations

childhood immunizationImmunizations protect your child from serious disease.

Immunizations (also called vaccines) strengthen your child’s immune system and teach it to fight certain diseases. This will prevent your child from getting sick. Vaccines are safe and effective. Parents make educated choices about their health and the health of their families every day. Making an educated choice about immunization is important. Get the answers to your questions on the Immunity Community website.

When Should I Immunize My Child?

It is important your child receives the recommended immunizations according to the Childhood Immunization Schedules (0-6 years old and 7-18 years old). The goal of the recommended schedule is to protect children as soon as it is safe and effective to do so. It is the only schedule that has been studied and proven to be safe. Many vaccine-preventable diseases are a greater risk to babies and young children. Following the recommended schedule keeps your child up to date on any vaccines that may be required for attending school and childcare Work with your doctor or nurse to stay ahead of the class by immunizing your child at the earliest recommended age to get the best protection against disease.

To find out more information on vaccines for school and childcare go to the Washington Department of Health’s webpage: School and Children Care Immunization Information for Families.

If you do fall behind in immunizing your child, it’s never too late to catch up! Ask your doctor or health care provider about the best way to get your child’s immunizations up to date. 

In Washington state, all children through age 18 can get vaccinated at no cost from a healthcare provider that participates in the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program. Your provider might charge an administration fee (a fee for delivering the vaccine), but you can ask to have it waived if you can’t afford it. Find a VFC provider near you.