A Healthy Start: Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child

National Immunization Awareness Month is a reminder that we all need vaccines right from the start and throughout our lives.

Immunization gives parents the safe, proven power to protect their children from 14 serious and sometimes deadly diseases before they turn 2 years old.

To celebrate the importance of immunizations for a healthy start and throughout our lives – and to make sure children are protected with all the vaccines they need – the Western UP Health Department is joining with partners nationwide in recognizing August as National Immunization Awareness Month. The week of August 3 – August 9 will focus specifically on babies from birth through age 2.

“Children who don’t receive recommended vaccines are at risk of getting the disease or illness, and of having a severe case,” said Kathy Mell, Immunization Coordinator for the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department. “Every dose of every vaccine is important to protect your child and others in the community from infectious diseases. Talk to your doctor or other health care professional to make sure your child is up to date on all the vaccines he or she needs.”

Today’s childhood vaccines protect against serious and potentially life-threatening diseases, including polio, measles, whooping cough and chickenpox.

There are many important reasons to make sure your child is vaccinated:

  • Immunizations can protect your child from 14 serious diseases.
  • Vaccination is very safe and effective.
  • Immunizations can protect others you care about.
  • Immunization can save your family time and money.
  • Immunization protects future generations.

When children are not vaccinated, they are at increased risk and can spread diseases to others in their family and community – including babies who are too young to be fully vaccinated, and people with weakened immune systems due to cancer and other health conditions.

Parents can find out more about the recommended immunization schedule at the CDC Vaccine Center or by visiting the Health Department’s Immunization page.