The Coastal Health District of Georgia serves the counties of Bryan, Camden, Chatham, Effingham, Glynn, Liberty, Long & McIntosh

Childhood Immunizations: Get the Facts

FACT: Routine childhood immunization in one birth cohort prevents about 381 million illnesses, 24.5 million hospitalizations, and 855,000 early deaths over the course of their lifetimes

FACT: Vaccines are safe, and scientists continually work to make sure they become even safer.

FACT: Most childhood vaccines produce immunity 90 percent to 100 percent of the time. Without vaccinations, your child is at greater risk of catching one of the vaccine-preventable diseases.

FACT: There are 10 vaccines recommended to protect infants from 14 vaccine-preventable diseases:
• DTaP: Protects against Diphtheria, Tetanus & Pertussis
• MMR: Protects against Measles, Mumps & Rubella
• HepA: Protects against Hepatitis A
• HepB: Protects against Hepatitis B
• Hib: Protects against Haemophilus influenzae type b
• Flu: Protects against Influenza
• PCV13: Protects against Pneumococcal disease
• Polio: Protects against Polio
• RV: Protects against Rotavirus
• Varicella: Protects against Chickenpox

FACT: Infants traveling abroad may need other vaccines along with the 10 recommended above, depending on the countries they are visiting. These vaccines could include Japanese encephalitis, typhoid, meningococcal or yellow fever.

FACT: Infants 6 months through 11 months of age should receive one dose of MMR vaccine before traveling abroad.

FACT: In 2017, 118 measles cases were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As of March 30, 2018, 34 cases have been reported to CDC. The majority of cases were unvaccinated.

FACT: Measles is still common in many parts of the world including some countries in Europe, Asia, the Pacific, and Africa. In 2017, 21,315 measles cases and 35 deaths were reported in Europe.

FACT: In 2016, about 85% of the world’s children received one dose of measles vaccine by their first birthday through routine health services – up from 72% in 2000.*

FACT: In 2017, 144† pertussis (whooping cough) cases were reported in Georgia. Of these, 36.8% were infants <12 months of age.

FACT: The most effective way to prevent pertussis (whooping cough) is through vaccination with DTaP for babies and children and with Tdap for preteens, teens, and adults. Vaccination of pregnant women with Tdap is especially important to help protect babies.

FACT: A Tdap vaccine is recommended for pregnant women during the 27th through 36th week of pregnancy, preferably during the earlier part of this time period.

FACT: Pertussis (whooping cough) can cause serious and sometimes deadly complications in infants, especially those who are not fully vaccinated.

FACT: In infants < 12 months of age, who get pertussis (whooping cough), about half are hospitalized. Hospitalization is most common in infants younger than 6 months of age. Of those infants with pertussis who need treatment in a hospital approximately:
• 61% will have apnea
• 23% get pneumonia
• 1.1% will have seizures
• 1% will die
• 0.3% will have encephalopathy (as a result of hypoxia from coughing or possibly from toxin)

FACT: Older siblings, parents or caregivers, who might not even know they have pertussis, infect many infants who get pertussis.

FACT: Influenza (flu) vaccine is recommended annually, August through May, for infants 6 months of age and older.

FACT: Hospitalization rates for flu are high among infants.

FACT: Rates of hepatitis B have dropped significantly since vaccinating infants became prevalent in 1991.

FACT: Before the varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, almost every child in the United States (about 4 million annually) contracted chickenpox.

FACT: Before the varicella vaccine was recommended, infants were four times more likely to die from chickenpox compared to children aged 1 to 14.

FACT: In 2017†, over 5,629 mumps cases were reported in the U.S. to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; 110 mumps cases were reported to the Georgia Department of Public Health during the same time period – the highest number of cases reported in the state in the past 10 years.

FACT: Vaccination is the best protection against mumps.

FACT: Mumps in approximately 1 in 10 children can lead to meningitis. Occasionally mumps can also lead to encephalitis, deafness (about 1 in 20,000 children) or death (about 1 in 10,000 children).

FACT: Almost all reported cases of tetanus occur in persons who either have never been vaccinated or who completed their primary series but have not had a booster vaccination in the past 10 years.

†2017 data are provisional and subject to change