Immunization Update for Students 16 years of age and older
Effective July 1, 2021, children 16 years of age and older, who are entering the 11th grade (including new entrants), must have received one booster dose of the meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV4), unless their initial dose was administered on or after their 16th birthday.
Meningococcal disease is a serious bacterial illness that affects the brain and the spinal cord. Meningitis can cause shock, coma and death within hours of the first symptoms. If your teen has not been vaccinated against meningococcal disease, we strongly recommend getting your 11th grader, aged 16 years or older, vaccinated before starting the 2021-2022 school year. Getting MCV4 (meningococcal conjugate vaccine) now will not only help protect your child against the ongoing threat of meningitis, it will also meet the new school entry requirement.
Ask your pediatrician or local health department about other shots your child may need including:
• the human papillomavirus (HPV) series
• the tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis shot (Tdap or Td booster)
• an annual flu vaccine; and
• catch-up immunizations, including chickenpox, MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) and hepatitis B.
If your child does not have health insurance or their health plan won’t cover these vaccines, call your local health department and ask about getting no cost or low cost vaccines. For more information, visit http://dph.georgia.gov/vaccines-children or call (800) 848-3868.
Immunization Information for 6th & 7th GradeSeventh graders are required to have the tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap) and meningococcal (meningitis) vaccines prior to entering school. Children born on or after January 1, 2002 who are attending seventh grade and new entrants into Georgia schools in grades 8 through 12 must have received one dose of Tdap vaccine and one dose of meningococcal vaccine. (“New entrant” means any child entering any school in Georgia for the first time or entering after having been absent from a Georgia school for more than 12 months or one school year). It is also recommended that all 11 and 12 year olds get the three-dose series of HPV vaccine to protect against Human Papillomavirus. The HPV vaccine can protect both males and females against some diseases including certain kinds of cancers.All children are eligible to participate regardless of insurance status. The Effingham County Health Department may ask for insurance information and a copy of your insurance card because it may be possible to bill your insurance for a small administration fee to help support school-based vaccination clinics this year and in the future. If your insurance does not agree to pay the fee or you don’t have insurance you will not be billed by us or your insurance.A summary of Georgia immunization requirements for child care and school attendance can be found by going to www.gachd.org and clicking on the Immunizations and Vaccinations link under the Quick Links menu.Vaccine Information SheetsFor more information on vaccines, go to www.cdc.gov/vaccines. Parents with any questions regarding whether or not their children are up-to-date on vaccinations can call the Effingham County Health Department at 912-754-6484.